Avoid Post-Holiday Fatigue: Cook Beans and Legumes for Quick and Easy Wholesome Meals

If we let our diet slide during the holidays, it’s important to get back into the swing of things. Beans and legumes are a great place to start. When I’m fatigued, a bowl of chili gives me strength. This time of year, when it gets dark early, we need all the help we can get. Help yourself by keeping them around.

Those of us who prepare the meals, love it when we have ingredients in the fridge that we can whip up. Problem is, prepared foods are expensive and probably not as fresh. Vegetarians rely on beans, legumes, nuts and grains as staples. Keep containers of cooked beans and legumes in the fridge. Knowing that there’s a container of cooked lentils in the fridge that you can turn into a nice easy meal, might keep you from eating unhealthy fast foods. Here are some ideas:

Lentils: a can of tomatoes and a bag of frozen vegetables, seasoned with a
bit of olive oil and soy sauce, make a nice soup. Or roll them into
tortillas with salsa.

Garbanzos: Throw garbanzos in with spring salad mix, tomatoes and avocados. Or make a soup from cooked garbanzos whirled in the blender with a big chopped onion. Simmer it and season with a spoonful of olive oil and soy sauce. Serve with a tasty bread.

Black beans: these cooked beans make great burritos but another options is
to serve them with cooked brown rice. They’re a little bit dry so load them up with salsa and add soy sauce. Sour cream and black beans are also tasty.

There are days when we don’t feel motivated. When it happens, remember… beans and legumes are our best friends.

Suellen Ocean is the author of the vegetarian cookbook, Poor Jonny’s Cookbook. Available herehttp://www.amazon.com/Poor-Jonnys-Cookbook-Suellen-Ocean/dp/0965114031

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Grape Juice is Wonderful… Fermented or Not

I always say, it’s the things we love the most that will bring us down in the end. I hope grape juice is not one of those things. I love grape juice. The unfermented kind. I love everything about it; the color, the tart sweetness as I gulp it down, the sound of ice cubes rattling as I sip it. Even though it’s 100% fruit juice, and contains natural sugar, it is still a sugary drink so I must be careful. Even though I water it down, those calories can add up. Especially on hot days when I want to gulp it down, glass after glass.

Looking at a chart, I see that table grapes are not that high in vitamin A nor vitamin C. (100 units of A and 4 units of C in a 100 gram edible portion.) This is why vitamin C is added to a bottle of grape juice.

Suellen Ocean is the author of many books on diverse topics. Her books are available here:  http://www.amazon.com/Suellen-Ocean/e/B001KC7Z78

 

Don’t Be Fooled by Coconut Oil… It’s a Saturated Fat… Like Cream

Coconut oil is everywhere these days, including natural foods stores. It’s popular with food manufacturers because it offers a non-dairy alternative for vegans and it has a better resistance to spoilage, NOT because it’s low fat. Coconut oil is an extremely saturated fat, like cream. If you wish to avoid saturated fats, watch out for Macadamia nuts because they are roasted in coconut oil, which is probably why people always say, “They’re so fattening!” Coconut oil is fabulous in shampoo and for dry skin but be careful, just because you find it in a “health food store,” doesn’t mean it’s the correct food for you to ingest.  Suellen Ocean is the author of the vegetarian cookbook, Poor Jonny’s Cookbook. Available here:

http://www.amazon.com/Poor-Jonnys-Cookbook-Suellen-Ocean/dp/0965114031

eBook or computer download through Smashwords:

https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/260122

eBook through Barnes & Noble:

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/poor-jonnys-cookbook-suellen-ocean/1102338251?ean=2940016618609

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Food&Cooking: The Best Dish at the Party… Teenagers Love it!

You’re going to be surprised when I say acorn dip but it’s true. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve taken acorn dip to a party, only to have the teenagers obsessing over it, especially the boys. I’ve come to conclude that there is something in the acorns that a growing teenager’s body needs. And acorns bring that special flavor, like Mediterranean olives or pungent cheese. The acorn dip is fashioned after your typical onion dip except I use dried onions from a natural foods store and I add a small bit of soy sauce. Surround the dip with Aztecan Blue Corn Chips and you have yourself an unusual hit!   Suellen Ocean is the author of Acorns and Eat’em, a how-to vegetarian cookbook and field guide for eating acorns. Find it here: http://www.amazon.com/Acorns-Eatem-How–Vegetarian-Cookbook/dp/1491288973

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Cooking With Leached Acorns… How Long Do They Need To Cook?

Not very long. It’s about the same amount of time that you would cook raw oats and they don’t need to boil away, just a little simmer for five or ten minutes will do. Be very careful because the acorns like to stick to the pan, so bring the heat up slowly and stir constantly. Remember, the cooking of the acorns comes AFTER they are leached. It doesn’t take a lot of effort to leach the acorns, it’s the shelling that takes a little bit of your time but you can put your feet up and relax while doing it, even listen to music or turn on a movie. Acorns are a wonderful addition to any dish you make, the effort is worth it.

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Suellen Ocean is the author of Acorns and Eat’em, a how-to vegetarian cookbook and field guide for eating acorns. Find it here: http://www.amazon.com/Acorns-Eatem-How–Vegetarian-Cookbook/dp/1491288973

Gathering Acorns… Which Acorns Are OK?

If you aren’t used to gathering acorns, the pretty little brown things lying on the ground look just fine but an experienced gatherer knows otherwise. Last years worm eaten, faded and empty acorns often remain lying on the ground. Once you pick up a fresh acorn, feel its weight and admire it’s brown beauty and compare it to an old one, you’ll understand. There’s a huge difference. Early in the season, an oak may begin dropping acorns that aren’t quite ripe or developed. It will also begin dropping green acorns. Wait for the fully developed acorns to fall and wait for the green acorns to turn brown. When the rain comes, heavy storms sometimes bury the acorns in a little dirt. This is OK. They are fine once they are rinsed off. If you wait long enough and the animals don’t cart away the acorns, these rains may bring the acorns to sprout. This is OK too as long as there is no green on it, for example, beginning to grow into a baby oak. So for young sprouts, just a little sprout is fine. If there is any nutmeat left in a sprouted acorn that has a sprout up to an inch, break the sprout off and proceed as you would with un-sprouted acorns.  Suellen Ocean is the author of Acorns and Eat’em, a how-to vegetarian cookbook and field guide for eating acorns. Find it here: http://www.amazon.com/Acorns-Eatem-How–Vegetarian-Cookbook/dp/1491288973

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There Was a Feeling in the Air… Hard Times Were Sure to Come

After I wrote “Acorns and Eat’em,” a how-to cookbook for gathering and preparing acorns, I wanted to share what else I had learned while living in the mountains, far from the grocery store, with a limited budget. Y2K was fast approaching and survivalists were sending me checks for my acorn book. Obviously there was a feeling in the air that hard times were sure to come. I care about people and nutrition so I continued creating unusual recipes from simple, natural, unprocessed ingredients. For example, in “Poor Jonny’s Cookbook”, my recipes teach you the art of making biscuits from scratch with minimal ingredients. Our great-grandparents knew how to survive, we need to follow their example and return to the basics. There’s a little bit of everything in this cookbook, my hope is that when you use this book, you’ll get into the flow of cooking with what you

Suellen Ocean is the author of the vegetarian cookbook, Poor Jonny’s Cookbook. Available here:

http://www.amazon.com/Poor-Jonnys-Cookbook-Suellen-Ocean/dp/0965114031

eBook or computer download through Smashwords:

https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/260122

eBook through Barnes & Noble:

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/poor-jonnys-cookbook-suellen-ocean/1102338251?ean=2940016618609

Poor Jonny's Cover

Weight Loss… Am I Missing Something?

I suspect my family suffers from the problem of being full but not feeling it. Unfortunately, that makes us want to keep eating. I suspect though that what my body is telling me is not to eat MORE but to get some activity going in my intestines. Foods like hot peppers stimulate digestion and good ‘ol old fashioned unfiltered organic apple juice will get something goin’ on. When we deprive our bodies of enzymes, found in fresh raw fruits and vegetables, we aren’t as happening as we should be. I don’t know about you but I’m pretty sure one of the key to keeping pounds down is listening wisely to your body as it cries, “Give me something to do.” Suellen Ocean is the author of the vegetarian cookbook, Poor Jonny’s Cookbook. Available here:

Paperback:

https://www.createspace.com/4282927

eBook or computer download through Smashwords:

https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/260122

eBook through Amazon:

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B004PGO2EA/ref=nrn_si_text

eBook through Barnes & Noble:

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/poor-jonnys-cookbook-suellen-ocean/1102338251?ean=2940016618609

Poor Jonny's Cover

Peppermint is Good Medicine

I always like to have peppermint growing in my garden. I drink it the way others drink soda pop. I usually don’t add anything to sweeten it, because it is fine alone but a touch of honey is nice. In the old herbals peppermint is used for ailments from A – Z, including nausea, vomiting, flu, hysteria, dizziness, fevers, etc. One source even claims it helps insanity. No wonder it’s so popular! I’d be careful about drinking it too soon before bedtime because it appears to be an excellent diuretic and you might make a lot of trips to the bathroom during the night.

Suellen Ocean is the author of Acorns and Eat’em, a how-to vegetarian cookbook and field guide for eating acorns. Find it here: http://www.amazon.com/Acorns-Eatem-How–Vegetarian-Cookbook/dp/1491288973

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Leave Recipes Laying Around To See Long After You’re Gone

Never do I feel closer to my mother than when I run across her notes to me regarding cooking. In these notes she praises me for my skill, gives me confidence and guidance, her mothering giving me energy that makes me feel she’s still here. My mother died in 2010 but lately I’ve been running across her notes every day. Her pretty handwriting and the loving thoughts she put into her notes and letters are a gift I did not expect. Thanks Mom.

Suellen Ocean is the author of the vegetarian cookbook, Poor Jonny’s Cookbook. Available here:

http://www.amazon.com/Poor-Jonnys-Cookbook-Suellen-Ocean/dp/0965114031

eBook or computer download through Smashwords:

https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/260122

eBook through Barnes & Noble:

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/poor-jonnys-cookbook-suellen-ocean/1102338251?ean=2940016618609

Poor Jonny's Cover