trešdiena, 2014. gada 19. februāris

Waste not! Carrot juice pulp and seed mix cookies

As promissed, here is the cookie recipe that will help you to save the food from waste. Juice pulp is a wonderful ingredient!

Carrot cookies: 

700g carrot juice pulp
3 eggs
50-100g butter
60ml olive oil
50-100g walnuts
200ml seed mix (pumpkin, sesame, sunflower, linseed etc.)
150g almond meal (can use tapioka flour, oatmeal flour or any roughly ground flour, or even a ground coconut with any flour of your choice)
0-100g sugar (or coconut sugar, other eco-and-health-friendly alternatives like agave syrup, just use according to your taste)

Mix all the ingredients together. Heat the oven to some 200 C. Put small bits on the baking sheet and pat them thin. Bake them in the oven until look crispy and the edges have started browning.
Time of baking will depend on how thick or thin you make the cookies, and also how large. I like mine sometimes large and thick to remain a little soft, but then I sometimes make them very small and thin so if not eaten immediately they would turn into kind of crackers.

Baking advice: first make a test pan with some 4-6 cookies, if they tend to fall apart, add some more flour to the mix, because it also depends how wet is your juice pulp.

Keeping in mind alterations you can make, it is easy to keep these lovely bits also gluten free!

Bonus tip: To green your home and your wallet: In our kitchen we use the baking parchment multiple times, until its really torn or cannot be used due to some other cake/cookie residue on it. 
For example, my mom baked a honey cake on my brothers birthday on 7th december, then we used the same sheets for Christmas gingerbreads, and last week I baked carrot cookies on the same sheets. Some of them got too wet, but most of them are folded back in the drawer.

In case someone in your household must eat gluten free foods only, keep in mind where you put your gluten free used baking parchment sheets, and keep them separate from the ones that are used for 'regular cookies'.

I hope you enjoy your cookies!
I think I'm gonna see how they turn out if I add some goji berries to the mix!

otrdiena, 2014. gada 11. februāris

Juice the rainbow!

While I am not participating in Jason Vale's global detox this year, one of my resolutions was to juice again EVERY day. We have been too stuck on the schedule of drinking fresh juice in the morning as the first "food" of the day. Well, our little one has lately changed her sleeping pattern and now she loves to sleep sometimes even until over 10am. In our city apartment at least that means no loud noises in the morning- so no juicing, no blendind.

So now I am learning to turn myself into "fresh juice ANY time of the day" drinker, and have it in the evening if not able to juice in the morning.

Just for some inspiration I wanted to share our juiced rainbow:

I am still very, very thankful to last years Pumpkin harvest. Cheers!! 

ceturtdiena, 2014. gada 6. februāris

Waste not- beauty masks

Waste not idea becomes more and more important. I have even started the course of Environmental Engineering just here in Latvia along with my UK Sustainable Devlopment distance learning Masters.. Will see how it goes, but the story here today is about beauty.

I'm not gonna discuss the polluting effect of shampoo botles or health hazards from chemical components in the decorative cosmetics, I think I'm already beyond that phase. I can't even remember when I used a store bought mask for either part of my body. The best ones come from your kitchen and nature, righ? Right! So what's the issue?

First, I like many recipes that I read online, in books or get from a friend. However, sometimes they include ridiculous amounts of products! Sometimes you can read that for facial you should use a half of banana or half of ripe avocado, or sometimes even 1 ripe avocado.. and that is only the base or 1 ingredient! Seriously? For what size of a face is this mask? Not mine for sure. And since we do not do facials every day, there is really no point of making a larger batch to use it tomorrow too.. Last time I did home spa in sauna (like this) with my best friend, the mask we made from whole avocado with some egg yolks, hemp oil and a drop of carrot juice covered not only both of our faces but whole two bodies! So, ladies, let's reduce the mask to the amount really necessary!

Second, while I like the recipes I read, I never ever buy anything just for the facial (or hair or any other mask for that matter). Use only those ingredients you already have on hand. I particularly like to enjoy the masks I make in one of two ways. One- I cook something and noone will notice the missing spoon of yogurt or double cream, one piece of dark chocolate or anything else.. Other- I like to use something that might otherwise go to waste- a small piece of banana my daughter left uneaten the night before, or a bit of avocado that nobody wants anymore, a teaspoon of oatmeal crumbs etc. You can see the double benefit of doing that, righ?

This morning while everyone was sound asleep I wanted to make a facial and I came to think about these things, so I made a portion just right for my face and neck- large spoon of leftover doublecream (the rest will be cooked in the eggs later on), 1 slice of my daughters yesterday's banana (the rest went into my smoothie), and a pinch of oatmeal. My face was happy and I was happy no seeing the products that did not fit on my face go to waste.

Let's be beautiful, not wasteful!