Tag: cucumber

What Do I Eat Today – The Importance of Liquids

what do I eat today liquids

This “What Do I Eat Today” menu focuses on the importance of liquids, especially at breakfast.

Liquids are alkalizing to the gut, help cleanse the colon, and have so many other benefits.

Start your day with lemon juice and water, followed by Green Drink. Enjoy my Herbal Tea recipe with ginger and cinnamon, and take a probiotic- I like Bio-K+.

Chose from two smoothies – my Tropitaya Smoothie, this month with fresh Ginger and Turmeric, or my Tropical Green Smoothie with Ginger.

For lunch we have Creamy Carrot Soup, and Raw Cucumber & Avocado Gazpacho is a cooling afternoon snack. For dinner, Creamy Broccoli Soup finishes the day.

lemon water

First Thing in the Morning

I have lemon water in the morning and then I wait until I'm hungry to have my Green Drink.

berry parfait

For Breakfast – Tropitaya or Tropical Green Smoothie

This “What do I Eat Today” menu includes a Tropitaya or Tropical Green Smoothie. The Tropitaya Smoothie is one of the most popular smoothies (and one of my favorites) at our stores in New Jersey and San Diego. In this month's menu, I add fresh turmeric and ginger.

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An alternative to my Tropitaya Smoothie in this menu, my Tropical Green Smoothie adds fruit and vegetables to Chef V's Tropical Green Drink. Optionally you can add 1 tbsp pea protein, 1 tsp fresh ginger, 1/2 tsp fresh turmeric to the smoothie.

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creamy carrot soup

Lunch – Creamy Carrot Soup

Creamy and delicious without dairy, this Carrot Soup recipe uses cashews to add richness and flavor. Fast and easy to make, the recipe is perfect for two, tasty and healthy. Add fresh turmeric and ginger for additional benefits.

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Afternoon Snack – Chef V's Raw Cucumber Avocado Gazpacho

Cool and creamy, my Gazpacho is a great light snack. You can easily double or triple my recipe and have delicious leftovers. The beauty of my veggie-rich recipe is that its high water and fiber content slows how fast you eat and fills you up quicker.

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Dinner – Creamy Broccoli Soup

My Creamy Broccoli Soup is for dinner. Made with coconut milk and coconut oil, the fiber in this soup supports gut health and has anti-inflammation and antioxidant properties. For additional gut health assistance, try my recipe variation adding fresh turmeric and ginger.

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What Do I Eat Today – A Fresh Vegan Menu

what do I eat today retreat

This “What Do I Eat Today” menu is a bit different. It is focused on cooling, fresh, seasonal foods. And the entire menu is vegan.

Start your day with lemon water, then green drink. My Berry Parfait is a light 'begin' the day' breakfast. Try my chilled raw cucumber avocado gazpacho for a creamy, refreshing lunch. For dinner, grilled artichokes are so good! Serve them with my Green Soup recipe topped with lemon basil pesto made with fresh herbs.

lemon water

I have lemon water in the morning and then I wait until I'm hungry to have my Green Drink.

berry parfait

For Breakfast – Berry Parfait

My raw berry parfait is made with nuts. Here's a tip: many raw food recipes call for soaking nuts. Why? Soaking nuts (from 2 hours to overnight) improves  the flavor and  nutritional value of the nuts by releasing dust, residue and tannin into the water, leaving the nuts with a softer, buttery texture and increasing their digestibility. Never use the soak water – always discard it.

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For Lunch – Chef V's Raw Cucumber Avocado Gazpacho

Cool and creamy, soups are a great way to start a meal, but are also awesome as a main course. You can easily double or triple my recipe and have delicious leftovers. The beauty of my veggie-rich recipe is that its high water and fiber content slows how fast you eat and fills you up quicker.

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grilled artichoke

Dinner – Grilled Artichoke with Two Sauces 

Grilled artichokes, precooked and finished at the picnic. They’ll love these on the barbecue. Serve with my two vegan sauces:  Raw Horseradish Mayonnaise, and  Vegan Herb Aioli.

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Also for Dinner – Green Soup with Lemon Basil Pesto

Green veggies are central to this recipe, full of vitamins. Cannellini beans add fiber and richness. A lovely soup for celebrating the end of winter, the bounty of summer crops, or anytime you crave something super fresh and seasonal.

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Raw Cucumber + Avocado Gazpacho

Cool and creamy, soups are a great way to start a meal, but are also awesome as a main course. You can easily double or triple my recipe and have delicious leftovers. The beauty of my veggie-rich recipe is that its high water and fiber content slows how fast you eat and fills you up quicker.

raw cucumber + avocado gazpacho

TOTAL TIME: 15 min

SERVES 2-4

Ingredients

  • 1 ripe avocado
  • 1 cucumber
  • 1/2 cup fresh cilantro leaves
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
  • 2 cups filtered ice water
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons sea salt
  • 1 lime, juice only
  • OPTIONAL TOPPINGS
  • Chopped tomatoes
  • Fresh chopped chives
  • Cucumber slices

Directions

Refrigerate all the ingredients overnight. Peel and seed the avocado and peel the cucumber and garlic.

Place all the cold ingredients in a Vitamix and process until smooth.

The colder the ingredients are, the less foam there will be. Serve cold and top with chopped tomatoes for a bright pop of flavor.

Easy Raw Pesto

This rEasy Raw Pesto is so delicious. Besides my Grilled Chicken Pasta, try this on gluten-free bread as a spread or use it as a marinade for your favorite protein or vegetables.

Chef V Easy Raw Pesto

Chef V Easy Raw Pesto

TOTAL TIME: 15 min

SERVES 8

Ingredients

  • 2 cups fresh basil
  • 3/4 cup raw pine nuts
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 cup cold-pressed olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • Sea Salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Directions

Process all the ingredients in a Vitamix until smooth. Will keep for up to a month refrigerated.

Super Smoothie

This Super Smoothie has everything – fresh fruit, avocado for richness, kale for vitamins, ginger for zing, and my protein powder for nutrition. Enjoy it in the morning after your 16 oz. of Organic Green Drink.

super smoothie

TOTAL 10 minutes

Prep Time: 8 minutes

Serving Size: 1 Person

Ingredients

  • ½ organic pear,
  • ripe ¼ avocado
  • ½ organic cucumber
  • ½ lemon juice
  • ¼ cup chopped cilantro
  • 1-2 pieces organic green kale
  • 1 tsp. fresh ginger, minced
  • ½ cup unsweetened coconut milk
  • 1 serving of Chef V Ultra Shake protein powder or Powder of your choice

Directions

Combine all ingredients in a blender. Blend 1-2 minutes until smooth. Add ¼ cup filtered water if necessary. Bon Appétit!

Raw Veggies Vs. Cooked: Does It Matter For Gut Health?

what do I eat today liquids

We know that eating more veggies can boost the number of friendly bacteria in your gut. But what’s a mystery to most people is if how we prepare our veggies affects gut health in any way. “V” reveals if there’s a winner between raw veggies or cooked plant-based foods. 

If you’re a nutrition research geek like me, you’ve probably come across lots of studies on intermittent fasting, vegetarian diets, keto diets and other types of eating protocols. But if there’s one type of food study that’s as rare as finding a perfectly round pearl in an oyster, it’s this subject…

Is there a difference between eating raw plants versus cooked veggies? As I’m writing this, it’s August, or as I like to call this time of year, Rawgust! Because it’s so hot out, it’s the best time of year to consume a raw, plant-based diet. All I know is that when it’s 100 degrees outside, the last thing I want to do is slave over a hot stove, cooking up a huge slab of meat. Nope, this time of year, it’s all smoothies, mocktails and salads (and maybe a gazpacho or two).

So I like to go with my gut and listen to what my body is craving—as long as the craving is for something healthy. But beyond my intuition, is there any research to back up my craving for raw food? Will going raw any time of year support the trillions of friendly bacteria in my gut microbiome?

Well, it got me wondering? So I did my best nutritional Sherlock Holmes investigating. Unfortunately, the trail went cold. But I persisted and eventually found what is believed to be the first study to bring up this nutritional debate.

salad

Raw Vs Cooked Veggies For Gut Health

Before we get into the research, chew on this…

Horses don’t eat cooked food. Neither do chimps or gorillas. Yet they’re strong as bulls. In fact, humans are the only animals that cook their food. Many paleontologists believe our human ancestors developed bigger brains precisely when eating cooked food became the norm. In the hundreds of thousands of years since, our gut microbiomes have been influenced largely from cooking bones and meat.

It’s no wonder that there has hardly been any research looking into the effects of raw plants on the gut microbiome.

But finally, in 2019, researchers from Harvard University put that question to the test … at least in mice, not humans. And the results were not what I expected.

What the researchers discovered was that the mice who ate raw sweet potatoes essentially committed murder on several of their gut species.

But if there’s one thing that drives me a little nuts is when I hear people say that raw food is hard for the body to digest. That might be true if you’re trying to eat a raw, high-starch veggie like a potato or sweet potato. I’m definitely not suggesting eating raw potatoes.

Why the researchers didn’t give the mice lots of other raw veggies, like say, lettuce, I can’t explain. I also have no clue why more research hasn’t been done on the effects of raw veggies on the gut microbiome versus cooked veggies.

veronica and kale

Eating Raw in Rawgust: Benefits

Now let me ask you something. If you’ve been partying in June and July like it’s 1999 and your digestion, energy and skin need a reboot, what do you think is better for you: cooked meat or salad?

Of course a diet high in raw veggies is much easier on your system than cooked meat. Now I admit, there are a few veggies that you may have a harder time digesting raw rather than cooked. This is especially true of the nightshade veggies:

  • Peppers (it doesn’t matter what kind or what color)
  • Tomatoes
  • Egglplant
  • Potatoes (which we covered)

Personally, I’m not a huge fan of raw broccoli either. But when it comes to green, leafy veggies such as spinach, kale, collard greens, lettuce, parsley, chard and dandelion, the research doesn’t lie. There are so many health benefits of the 7 leafy greens that are featured in Organic Green Drink that I could write a book about it.

In fact, I sort of did: a cookbook, Making Cleansing Easier, which features an intro that talks about several of these health benefits.

The bottom line is that if you want a health makeover, let the sizzling summer months be the perfect time to boost your intake of raw veggies. Your gut microbiome will thank you for it.

© 2021 Chef V, LLC.