It’s Tasty Tuesday. Can you believe it’s been 7 months since I went vegan? Back then, I was a hot mess, in the throes of ulcerative colitis, with pre-cancer in my colon. Read more about that diabolical period of my life here. I had no idea that I could heal myself with my diet. But guess what? I did. I went from Omnivore to Vegan, cold Tofurky! News flash people! I used to take 16 or more expensive pills a day, bleed from my bowels and have other autoimmune issues that drove me bonkers.
Today, I am off all my medications. My quality of life has improved exponentially. It’s like a healing of biblical proportions. My Balm of Gilead IS a vegan diet.
Navigating a plant-based diet in the beginning made me feel like I had moved to Mars. I was completely lost because I USED to plan dinner around what meat I had in my fridge or freezer. Like most Americans, I was completely unaware that what I was eating was damaging my body. I thought meat and dairy were healthy and that they supplied my body with necessary protein and calcium. I was wrong. So I bought lots of books to re-educate myself. There were two that featured the same recipe by Chef AJ: her “Outrageous Black Bean Brownies.” I made them and realized baked goods really could be made without eggs, butter or crazy amounts of sugar and still taste delicious. I was so thrilled I shared the recipe here on this blog. Chef AJ responded to me in the comments of that post and offered to send me a copy of her book “Unprocessed” to review. She didn’t chastise me, but kindly opened the plant-based door. I learned quickly that you can’t just go and publish someone’s recipe on your blog without adapting it, or asking for permission. Sorry Chef AJ! I was a new blogger and didn’t understand the rules of blogging etiquette.
Because of Chef AJ, I rarely use oil in my kitchen, I’ve drastically cut my sugar intake and I’m working on my salt addiction (a girl’s gotta have a vice, right?). We’ve emailed back and forth and she even took the time to share an article with me about why oil consumption can be bad for you. Oils were super hard for me to significantly reduce in my diet, because I didn’t know how to create salad dressings without oil. Her House Dressing (recipe below) changed all that and rocked my world! In short, she was my mentor and a huge help during my transformation. During my Green Smoothie Challenge, she even shared her new Take Five salad dressing and encouraged me to post a link to it. Friends! It’s made without oil, nuts or seeds and is incredible!
She helped me to understand why plant based foods are so much better for us in terms of maintaining a healthy weight. Her passion is helping others discover what I’ve learned, that a whole-foods, plant-based diet is the best thing we can offer our bodies and the planet.
I’ve sampled many of the recipes from her book. Among my favorites are the Disappearing Lasagna, the Hail to the Kale Salad, and her Banana Strawberry Mousse Tart (raw, holy crap it’s good!) But there is one recipe of her’s that I have to have in my fridge at all times. It’s her signature House Dressing I mentioned above. I use it to spruce up salads, but the stuff is versatile! I put in on burritos, in tacos, over steamed veggies, use it as a dip and sometimes drink it straight from the mason jar, so without further ado, here is the Recipe.This time with permission!
1/2 cup water
4 Tablespoons tahini
6 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice
4 Tablespoons low sodium tamari
4 Tablespoons Dijon mustard
8 Tablespoons nutritional yeast
1 Tablespoon date syrup or pure maple syrup
Method: Place all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth.
Rules of Engagement:
1- You must be a follower of this blog, if you don’t know how to do that, there is a “Follow blog via email” button at the top column to the right.
2- You must like this post (click on the title name of this post, then go to the bottom of the post just above comments and push the like button),
3- You must comment below, telling me what led you to eat a more “Unprocessed” diet, or why you need this book to help you start!
Winner to be announced Saturday July 31st, 2012.
And now for the winner of last Tasty Tuesday’s Vegemite Giveaway……
Winner was selected by using the random.org service. Please email your mailing address to me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will mail you your prize!
Until Somer Saturday….
UPDATE FROM CHEF AJ Thank you for your blog. I wish I could give a book to all of your readers but even if they don’t win they can still get many of my recipes for free at my webiste http://www.EatUnprocessed.com or on my Facebook page. I just posted an amazing oil-free dressing today called Quick 6. Love & Kale, Chef AJ