Thursday, November 12, 2009
Thoughts: Chocolate. MMMM. What do you think when you hear the word chocolate? I used to think 'Yum', 'I need it' 'It makes me feel food for a little while and then I eat too much and I feel crappy, tired and guilty'. I would associate chocolate with pleasure and then guilt! Aahhh it was torture! I would love to eat it, but then feel crap after, and I always wondered if I could ever just enjoy chocolate! Well the good news is that chocolate is actually really really really good for you! Wooo and the best thing about this Earth Diet is that I am adventuring in new whole foods and making everything from scratch!
So here is the down low on chocolate! Chocolate is a natural whole food from the earth. I'm not talking about the cadbury type, that is full of chemicals, preservatives and artificalness. Im talking real real chocolate made from cocoa beans.
Here's some fun facts about chocolate. Chocolate is made from cocao beans. Cocao beans are whole raw chocolate beans, they are "the new red wine", a Mayan superfood. Cocao beans are the seeds of the Amazonian fruiting tree and the source of all chocolate and cocoa products. The Mexican Mayan kings drank up to 30 pure chocolate drinks per day to maintain their vigour and valued the bean so highly that it was used as money!!! Chocolate has 400 distinct flavour compounds - thats 200% more than any other food! The flavoniods keep cholesterol from gathering in blood vessels, reduce the risk of blood clots, and slow down the immune responses that lead to clogged arteries. So, by eating a small amount of your own homemade chocolate daily, you may actually be reducing your risk of a heart attack. How cool is that?! "Oh I better have some chocolate today to give my body love and nutrients!" hehe woooo!
Theobroma Cocao literally means "Food Of The Gods", and coao beans have 14 times as many antioxidant flavonoids as red wine, and 21 times more than green tea! Cocao is a source of phytonutirients like cardio-protective polyphenols, beta-carotene, aminos, protein, omega 3, calcium, zinc, iron, copper, sulphur, potassium and possibly the best food source and muscle relaxing, stress relieving magnesium - now you know why you crave chocolate! hehe!
So the good news is you can eat as much chocolate as you want, NOT the chocolate you buy in the supermarket, and even the organic chocolate (which used to be my favourite!) are full of preservatives, chemicals and artificialness!
So whats wrong with supermarket chocolate?
Supermarket chocolate has been processed so much that the flavoniods have been destroyed in the manufacturing process, loosing all health benifits, so you are just consuming chemicals and calories. It is also packed with refined sugar. Another ingredient to stay away from is soy lecithin. Unfortunately soy lecithin is not added to chocolate to give you any nutritional value. Soy lecithin is an emulsifier, so it’s added to chocolate to keep the cocoa and the cocoa butter together. Solvents are used during the “degumming” process of soybean oil, so soy lecithin itself is likely to contain chemical solvents. You also need to consider the quality of the soybeans used to product soy lecithin. If the soybeans are not organic, then the soy lecithin will contain herbicides and pesticides. And soybeans are often genetically modified which is an additional concern.
So to avoid all the chemicals in chocolate I have been making my own chocolate everyday since I discovered how to make it 4 days ago! Its absolutely amazing, rich, fufilling, fun and so relaxing! And the thing is you get full and satisfied after only a little bit, you don't feel like eating more and more until you feel sick and overeaten.
The best thing is about making your own chocolate is that you can EAT AS MUCH AS YOU WANT!!! You don't have to worry about too much, calories or putting on weight! If you make your own meals from whole foods, you really can eat as much as you want, and you won't put on weight! Your body recognizes real, whole foods and takes the nutrients, and poops out the rest! I have been eating so much goodness, and I have actually lost weight, not that I was fat to begin with, but because of the junk food I had wobbly bits around my butt, stomach, arms, now I feel toned and lean! I believe you end up looking like the food you eat! If you eat whole earthy healthy foods, you will look whole, earthy and healthy! I have lost fat, toned up, and the best thing is you get to keep your boobs! wooooo! (whole!) Haha! My boyfriend ate the chocolate balls and asked "Can I really eat as much of this as I want? How can something that tastes so good be healthy for me?" wooo and you can! and thats the earth providing!
So how do you make your own chocolate?
I bought a packet of cacao beans from the organic store. You can roast them for 40 minutes on high temp in the oven, take them out when the shell is starting to crack. Peel the skins off, and then you are left with the bean, then grind them with a grinder or mortar and pestol. Then you are left with cocao powder, and mix that with some water, a little olive oil and agave syrup (natural sweetner from a plant, used as an alternative from sugar!). Alternatively you can buy cocao powder in a packet which is the beans already roasted and grinded for you. Mix this all together and whalllooo you are left with a thick, dark, creamy texture. MMMMM! Eat it like that, or you can roll it in balls and put in the fridge or freezer to set. Tonight for my friends bithday I rolled the chocolate in balls with oats and almonds and it was just superb! And it only takes like 5 minutes to prepare (with the cocao powder, obviously the beans take longer)
Challenges: I was craving lollies today, I used to love gummi bears and any gummi lollies really. But my homemade chocolate soon fixed that craving!
Triumphs: Its so freeing to be free of my addiction to chemicals, gluten, preservatives, artifical lollies, junk food, fried food. My friend Emmily said yesterday "there's so much happiness and beauty to experience in this world and our feelings and emotions can be magnified by a million if we are eating the right things.. the foods earth intended us to eat". She's absolutely right! The earth provides us with everything we need to satisfy us, maintain us, provide us with life! And before when I was consuming chemicals, I was basically a walking chemical, experiencing life as a chemical, and my experiences felt so dull and boring, whereas now they feel full, and rich! It really makes a huge impact on your life and experiences when you eat whole foods from the earth!
What I Ate Today:
Breakfast: oats and almonds. MMMM
Lunch: One of my amazing homemade veggie patties from last nights dinner! (recipe is blog Day 20).
Dinner: Homemade curry....from scratch! It was chicken thai green curry! And I used only herbs and spices and veggies! recipe below!
Dessert: homemade chocolate balls with oats and almonds! Recipe above! With cherries and blueberries on the side!
Cost: organic free range chicken $9.08, caraway seeds $1.39, fresh corriander $1.97, coconut $2.98, chilli green hot $1.52, lemongrass $1.97, corriander seeds $2.03, green beans $1.21, broccoli 91 cents/ Total $23.06. This served 4 people so dinner cost per person was $5.76 each! (But I didn't use the entire ingredients, I still have corriander, chicken, broccoli, and the herbs leeft over for another curry!)dessert cost: Blueberries $3.35, cherries $4.55 = $7.90 (I already had the ingredients for chocolate!)
Recipe: Chicken Thai Green Curry
Ingredients for the curry paste:
10 fresh green chilis, finely chopped (keep seeds for extra heat, if desired)
2 tbsp. finely chopped lemongrass
1 tsp. ground coriander
1 small shallot, finely chopped
3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 tsp. galangal root (or ginger)
1 tsp. of freshly ground coriander seeds
1 tsp. of freshly ground caraway seeds
A few ground peppercorns to taste
1 tsp. himalayan salt
1 teaspoon kaffir lime leaves
Mortar and pestle (for grinding and later, pounding)
Blender if mortar and pestle are not available
My own curry paste! wooo from the heart, from scratch and from the earth!
1. Organize all of your ingredients.
2. Gently heat a medium saucepan until surface is hot.
3. Add all ingredients paste to saucepan.
4. Stir fry for a few minutes.
5. Place contents of saucepan into mortar or blender. Pound or puree until smooth, adding tiny amounts of water if needed.
7. Store green curry paste in a plastic container with a tight-fitting lid to use for later on in the week! and use save two-three tablespoons now for cooking.
Ingredients for chicken thai curry.
Chopped organic free range chicken
kaffir lime leaves
Directions to make the chicken thai green curry (You can make this vegetarian without chicken!)
1. Heat olive oil or virgin coconut oil in a wok or saucepan. Add 2-3 tablespoons of your amazing curry paste!
2. Add chicken and fry until golden.
3. Open the coconut (there are 3 holes at the top, one of them is soft, poke it with a knife and get the juice/milk out of it) and pour it on the chicken.
4. Allow to simmer, add brocoli and beans.
5. Add kaffir lime leaves and then the agave syrup to make it sweet!
6. Simmer until the vegetables are done for you, I like them when they are firm and crunchy!
7. Squeeze lime over the curry.
8. Serve with brown rice! This is the most divine curry I have ever had!
Ingredients for chocolate balls:
1. Cocao beans(if you buy the beans, roast the on high temp in over for around 40 minutes until the peel starts cracking. Unpeel the peel and then grind the beans to a powder) or you can buy cocao powder already made.
2. Agave syrup
6. olive oil or extra virgin coconut oil if you like the coconutty taste!
1. Put Cocoa powder in a bowl.
2. Add some water and olive oil and agave syrup. Taste and if you would like it sweeter add more agave, thicker add more powder, smoother add more water. Get creative!
3. Add chopped almonds and oats (you can add anything, mint, fruit etc, go nuts!)
4. Roll into ball!
5. Ready to eat or put them into the freezer to harden!
Exercise: 20 minute walk to the supermarket and back! hehe
345 days to go!