Well Dined




About a month ago I got really excited about juicing after watching a documentary called "Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead."  The man in the film goes on a 2 month long juice fast, which I was definitely not prepared to do.  I wasn't even prepared to do the more standard 7-10 day juice fast.  But I did like the idea of using juices to consume large quantities of raw vegetables in a more palatable manner.  So I bought a ton of veggies and went to work.


I started with a recipe from the doc's website and added a little to it, using carrots, bell pepper, apple, ginger, golden beet, fennel, and mango.


Gorgeous color!  I used too much ginger, though, it had quite a kick.


Here is the downside - I don't actually have a juicer.  So I used my Vitamix to pulverize everything then passed it through a fine mesh sieve.  It was time consuming and messy and left me with a lot of pulp.  The pulp problem is present even if you have a juicer - you don't want to waste it, but what do you do with it?


With the ginger-carrot flavor, I knew that this pulp would make good quick bread or muffins.  And it did!  (I put a super easy recipe for using pulp to make bread at the bottom of the post.)  But not all pulp will have a flavor that works well this way.


I used a bell pepper, spinach, kale, carrot, and celery pulp to make a tomato sauce for lasagna roll-ups (recipe at bottom).  I also used it as a base for a chickpea curry.  But then I ran out of ideas (it's great as fertilizer but I don't have a garden going yet).  I also ran out of patience for this whole juicing thing.


So I ultimately decided to add veggies into my daily protein shake and leave it at that.  Buying that huge load of veggies made me feel great, but utilizing them all quickly was difficult.  I needed to find one or two veggies I could buy consistently.  Spinach is one of the most nutrient packed veggies and it blends easily into smoothies, making it the perfect choice.  It also doesn't have a super strong flavor, which is great.  It does go bad quickly, though, so I buy it in bulk and puree it with coconut water, then freeze it in an ice cube tray.

Sarah's Daily Smoothie
Serves 2

1/2 cup coconut water
1/2 cup almond milk
1 frozen banana
2-3 frozen spinach cubes
1 scoop vanilla protein powder
1/4 cup raw oats
1/2 tsp coconut extract (optional)
1/2 tsp almond extract (optional)

Tropical Greens Smoothie
This one is more of a sweet treat and doesn't have any protein.
Serves 2

1/2 cup pineapple chunks
1/2 cup mango chunks
1 frozen banana
1/2 cup coconut water
1/2 cup almond milk
handful of baby spinach
1 tsp coconut extract (optional)

Veggie/Fruit Pulp Quickbread

1 1/2 cups pulp (carrot, zucchini, and fruit pulp work best)
1/2 cup oil, melted butter, or applesauce
1/2 cup honey or brown sugar
2 eggs, beaten or 1 mashed banana
1 tsp vanilla
1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
up to 1 cup chopped nuts, raisins, toasted coconut, or chocolate chips (optional)

Beat together oil and honey, then add eggs, vanilla, and pulp.  Sift dry ingredients and add to zucchini mixture.  Add optional ingredients last.  Bake in a greased 9" loaf pan at 350F for 45 to 60 minutes.

Spinach Lasagna Rolls
adapted from Skinnytaste
Makes 9 rolls.

9 whole wheat lasagna noodles, cooked
10 oz frozen chopped spinach, thawed and completely drained
15 oz part-skim ricotta cheese
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 egg
salt and fresh pepper
32 oz tomato sauce
1/2 cup part skim mozzarella cheese, shredded

Preheat oven to 350°. Combine spinach, ricotta, Parmesan, egg, salt, and pepper in a medium bowl. Ladle about 1 cup sauce on the bottom of a 9 x 12 baking dish.

Place a piece of wax paper on the counter and lay out lasagna noodles. Make sure noodles are dry. Take 1/3 cup of ricotta mixture and spread evenly over noodle. Roll carefully and place seam side down onto the baking dish. Repeat with remaining noodles.

Ladle sauce over the noodles in the baking dish and top each one with 1 tbsp mozzarella cheese. Put foil over baking dish and bake for 40 minutes, or until cheese melts.

To serve, ladle a little sauce on the plate and top with lasagna roll.

Per roll: 217 Cal, 8.7 g Fat, 4.4 g Fiber, 15.8 g Protein, 23 g Carbs, 3.9 g Sugars

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