My Fourth Raw Monday | Raw Salad Recipes

My Fourth Raw Monday | Raw Salad RecipesIf you are looking for weeks 2 and 3, don’t bother. They were a lot of learning and lessons that can be summarized here…

1. I was making eating raw WAY TOO DIFFICULT

2. I was making eating raw WAY TOO EXPENSIVE

3. I was making eating raw WAY TOO CALORIC

So here I am at week 4 and here are my NEW “Raw Monday Rules”…

1. I only make ONE meal from a recipe

2. The other meals/snacks are either fruit, veggies, salad, or nuts

3. I eat primarily whole foods and not store bought raw packaged stuff

4. I look for meals where the MAJORITY of the meal is fruit/veggies

5. I look for meals with lower caloric count (unless it’s dessert I make raw that day of course)

6. If the meal does call for large amounts of nuts, dates, oil, or other calorically dense foods, I use a tad less

Armed with my new rules and lessons I have learned over the past month, I feel confident in my raw journey ahead.

So today I made a DELICIOUS recipe from rawmazing.com…

Curry Carrot Salad

4 cups grated carrots, (approximately 10 medium carrots, grated)
2 cups snow peas, sliced into 1/2-inch long pieces
2 cups diced fresh pineapple
1/2 to 1 cup raisins
1 bunch scallions, sliced thin

Curry Dressing

1/2 cup cashews, soaked for at least 6 hours and drained
1/2 cup fresh almond milk (you can use water but it won’t be as flavorful)
2 teaspoons sweet yellow curry powder
1/2 teaspoon nama shoyu
1 tablespoon liquid sweetener of choice
Himalayan salt to taste

I also added cilantro to the “salad” and garlic, turmeric, and ginger to the “dressing”

1. Toss carrots, snow peas, pineapple, raisins and scallions together in a large bowl.
2. Place all dressing ingredients in a high-speed blender and blend until smooth.
3. Pour dressing over salad and mix through to coat all pieces.

This salad is seriously AMAZING, the only problem is that is serves 6 and I ate the whole thing. YIKES!!

So now the only RAW MONDAY issue I am having is over-eating. Any suggestions?? I have been posting recipes and pics here…

www.facebook.com/FoodFitnessFinanceFun

I would love to get some raw-dvice from any experts out there!!!

Crockpot Meal #4: The Women’s Bean Project

The Womans Bean ProjectThe Women’s Bean Project is where a woman earns her future – for herself, her family, her community and our economy.

Products made by Women’s Bean Project over the last 25 years include handcrafted, limited-edition jewelry and gourmet food items for bean soup, chili, cookies and brownies, corn bread, dips, mixes, salsas, gluten-free items, and more. Products are sold through their website, as well as through various online retailers and stores across the United States.

My mom and I have been buying the Chili and Bean Soups from The Women’s Bean Project for the past 20 years. My mom gave me the 6 Bean Soup as a Christmas gift this year, so I decided to crockpot it as soon as I was back in the RV.

Here’s how it went down…

Cost of Soup Mix (includes beans and spices): $6.00
Onion $.50
Garlic: $.50
Can of Tomatoes: $2.00

The directions call for overnight soaking of the beans, but I forgot until this morning that I wanted to make it, so they ALSO have directions for impatient chefs (YAY! Thanks!!) so I put them in water into the microwave for 15 mins (don’t judge me monkey!)

Picked up the ingredients last time I was shopping so shopping didn’t take any extra time since it’s so simple.

  • 12:00 pm Friday: Cut the onion and garlic, opened the can of tomatoes, and put everything in the crockpot WHILE the beans were in the micro.
  • 12:15 pm: Stirred it up and put it on HIGH
  • 3:15 pm: Stirred it up and turned it down to LOW…smells DELISH in here!
  • 5:00 pm: Tasted it and beans were still hard-ish. Want to have it for dinner so turned back up to HIGH.
  • 7:00 pm: Too lazy to make the Quinoa I bought for it, so I broke open the crackers ($4.00) and we enjoyed our soup with crackers this time.

I give it an 8 out of 10…only because beans make se feel heavy so they are never my first choice.

Hubby gave it a 9 out of 10…WHAT? That is an AMAZING review coming from him. He said he would eat meals like this every night! Be careful what you wish for…

After we ate it, I turned the crockpot to low, added a bit more water, and went to bed.

If you have read my past crockpot meals, you know I eat more than an average person, but even so, our soup lasted us 3 meals each. On Friday I ate 3 c and Rick ate 2 c, Saturday we each had 2 c for lunch and 1 c for dinner. I did end up buying Rick saltines which added $2.50. This crockpot made a total of 11 cups of soup…WOWZERS!!!

Total cost was $15.50 which comes to $1.41 a cup (which is probably a normal serving once you added the crackers or quinoa).

Total cost per serving: $1.41

Total time to make: 15 minutes work, 24 hours sitting in the pot.

Sounds like a success story to me!

Here are my other crockpot meals…

http://www.foodfitnessfinancefun.com/category/recipes/

Here is the Women’s Bean Project website…

http://www.womensbeanproject.com/

Crockpot Meal 3: Sweet Potato Masala

crockpot-recipe-sweet-potato-masala-veganI am super excited to make this because one of my favorite meals at a restaurant I love is Sweet Potato Masala!! This may be one of my most successful vegan recipes yet!

Tuesday 10am: Grocery Shopping…10 mins…only needed a couple things I didn’t already have…

  • 2 Large Sweet Potatoes $2.85
  • Large Can of Crushed Tomatoes $1.19
  • 2 Cans of Low fat Unsweetened Coconut Milk $3.58
  • Cilantro $.34
  • Basmati Rice $5.29 (and will last me all week for sure)

Ingredients I already had…

  • 1 Tbsp. Fresh Grated Ginger
  • 3 Cloves Crushed Garlic
  • 1 Tbsp. Cumin
  • 1 Tbsp. Garam Masala
  • 1 tsp. Turmeric
  • 1 tsp. Coriander
  • 1⁄2 tsp. Cardamom
  • 1⁄2 Tbsp. Chili powder
  • A few Cloves
  • A few Fennel Seeds
  • Salt to taste

Spices are pretty expensive up front, but last a long time. Even the Cardamom that was like $12 only comes to pennies each serving. So I would guess for this meal all the spices would total $2-$4.

Tuesday 11am: Prep time 10 minutes

Combine the ginger, garlic, tomatoes, coconut milk, spices, and cubed Sweet Potatoes in your Crock Pot.

Cook on high for 3 hours and then low for 3 hours. Or high for 4 or low for 8 or whatever combo works with your schedule.

Tuesday 5pm: Made Basmati Rice…took 20 minutes total

Let it cool a bit and sprinkled cilantro leaves on top.

My Taste Test…8 out of 10. I thought it was DELISH! And very spicy which I love. I didn’t really measure my spices out, I just tossed them in so not sure which of the spices actually made it spicy but it’s perfect for me.

Hubby’s Taste Test…8 out of 10…WHAT??? I may be a good wife yet!! He said if it was creamier it would be a 10. The recipe I adapted mine from had yogurt and corn starch in it to thicken and cream it up. I live in a small town and there wasn’t vegan yogurt at our store and for some reason corn starch scared me, so I just omitted them both. I will try it again next time with the vegan yogurt for my hubby! YAY!

Total Prep Time: 40 minutes

Cost: $16.25

We each had 2 giant bowls of it for each meal and it fed us a total of 6 meals (3 each) so we paid $2.71/meal

Like I have said before, we eat twice as much as a normal person so you guys could probably get it done for about $1.35/meal.

YAHOO!

Crockpot Meal #2: Saag Paneer

Crockpot Meal Saag PaneerI am super excited for this vegan crockpot recipe because Indian Food is my FAVORITE and we spend about $50 every time we eat out (which used to be a couple times a week, but now we have scaled back to once a month). MAN…I hope this is good!!

Ingredients:

4 large garlic cloves, chopped…already had but prob cost about $.50
3 tbsp. minced ginger…$.40
1 1/2 cups tomato sauce…$1.49
1 tbsp. garam masala…couldn’t’ find it so I skipped it
1 tbsp. ground coriander…$2.99 for bottle
1 tbsp. ground cumin…already had, but approx. $.10
1 tsp. salt…already had but prob like $.01
1/8 tsp. cayenne pepper…already had, approx. $.05
1 can low fat coconut milk…$1.59
3 10 oz. boxes of spinach, thawed…$4.17
1 bag fresh baby spinach…$3.59
12 oz. firm tofu, chopped into cubes…$1.69
Basmati Rice…$5.59 for enough to feed a small army!!

Instructions:

  • Add everything to the slow cooker except for the fresh spinach and tofu
  • Cook on low for 3 hours.
  • Open and add the fresh spinach. Cook for 1 more hour.
  • Blend everything using an immersion blender or blending batches. Return to the slow cooker.
  • Add the tofu and cook for 1 more hour. Serve over quinoa, rice, or with Naan.

Recipe from Healthy Girls Kitchen

Sunday 5pm: Shopping for ingredients (20 minutes)
Sunday 6pm: Prep time 10 minutes max
Monday 2pm: Finished Prep (10mins)
Monday 7pm: Made Basmati Rice (30 mins)
Monday 7:30pm: EAT!

My Taste Test…this was a CHALLENGE for us as our favorite food ever is Saag Paneer from a local Indian Food restaurant. I thought it was GOOD as long as I didn’t compare it to our fave. I would give it a 6 out of 10. It was a little bland but I don’t know Indian spices enough to know what to add.

Hubby’s Taste Test…he ate it but didn’t like it. He won’t eat leftovers like I will. He said it was bland and even though I told him NOT to compare, I know he did. He gave it a 1 out of 10.

I added cilantro to one of my servings and that helped give it some zip! I would love to hear from experienced Indian Food peeps as to what other spices I could add to help!!

Total Prep Time: A little over an hour
Total Cost: $15.27 new stuff+ $.66 ingredients I already had on hand=$15.93
Lasted us 7 meals (and we eat a LOT so you will probably get double that)
Total Cost per Meal=$2.28

YAY!

So far my biggest “complaint” about cooking all these vegan crockpot recipes is cleaning all this mess up!!