Red, White & Blue Ice Cream Cake! Happy 4th of July!

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Happy 4th of July my fellow Americans!! I know, I know, its a few days away but that doesn’t mean I can’t be excited or potentially get you excited for (what should be) a glorious day! All the politics and drama aside we live in an amazing country and we truly are blessed. Blessed. Really, we have an abundance of freedom for exponentially  amazing possibilities. So I decided to make a Raw, Vegan & Gluten Free ice cream cake to celebrate. Nom. Nom. Nom. It was good. I mean good as in great. And it is quiet pretty too! It is so much more fun to eat ice cream when you know it isn’t loaded with fat dairy. gross. This is actually loaded with super foods which should translate into super powers! (Yes, super powers)! Have a fun filled day!

Benefits of  RawVegan Ice Cream:

  • Brain Freeze inducing
  • Contains vitamins, nutrients, antioxidants and rays of sunshine
  • Cruelty free creamy, cool, dreamy summer time delight

What you need:

Red Laye:r

Strawberries, cut in half to fill the edge of cake pan

White Ice Cream Cake Layer:

cashews, bananas, pitted dates, melted coconut oil, vanilla extract,  vegan milk (I used almond)

Blue Ice Cream Cake layer:

frozen blueberries, frozen strawberries (can use blueberries instead for a more true blue layer) vegan milk, dates, walnuts, banana

 

xoxo,

SSP

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4th of July Red, White & Blue Sangria!

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Independence Day is next week and this would be the perfect drink for the celebration! It is loaded with yummy berries and boozy liquors to make sure your 4th of July is one to remember. That is, if you don’t drink enough to forget. You’re following me, right? 🙂 Sangria is and probably always will be one of my favorite cocktails of sorts. Not only is it always made with two of my favorite things, fruit and wine, it really leaves room for your inner concoctress to come out (thats a word right, concoctress?)!  I could not find a decent recipe for White Wine Sangria that mixed berries and ginger ale, which were my two requirements, so I did what I always do, got creative! Oh yeah, and this also has no added sugar. Bonus!

Benefits of Sangria 😉

  • Taste really good & easy to drink
  • Great to mix and match ingredients- allows for creative combinations
  • Made with healthy, yummy, colorful fruit

What you need:

2 Bottles of White Wine (750 ml)

1 cup raspberries

1 cup strawberries – trimmed and cut in half

1 cup blueberries

2 cups homemade ginger ale

1 cup xylitol

2 oz white rum – I used Bacardi

2 oz Blueberry vodka- I used Stoli

Method:

If you are going to make homemade ginger ale then follow the recipe up until ready to assemble the soda. You will want to wait to make it so the carbonation hasn’t fallen flat. Then put wine, berries, xylitol and liquor in a pitcher or beverage dispenser and put in the refrigerator overnight (3-5 hours will work too). These both can be prepared one day ahead. Just prior to serving assemble the ginger ale with a new bottle/can of seltzer or soda water and add to the sangria. You can add ice to the pitcher or to the individual glasses. Watch fireworks and give kisses to the ones you love! Happy 4th of July!!

Tri-Color String Bean Garlic Fries- A Fry Lovers Fantasy

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Again, Mother Nature you are awesome. period. Look at these string beans; I mean up until a few days ago I didn’t even know that string beans came in multiple colors. Did you? I found the organic beans at my local farmers market this weekend and had to have them even though I wasn’t sure how I was going to use them. I thought about it and settled on fries. I am a french fry lover (anything fried really) but lets be honest, one can’t keep her girlish figure in check if she is constantly eating fried potatoes. Insert baked string bean garlic fries! Nom, Nom, Nom!

I decided to play around with food styling a little and use the natural evening light that was coming through my kitchen window to photograph the beans. Kinda cool, eh? (pats self on the back). What do you think?

Benefits of String Beans

What You Need:

2 cups string beans, washed and ends trimmed (green is just fine, but tri-color is better, obviously)!

1 Tbls EVOO

1 tsp garlic powder

2 cloves garlic- one thinly sliced, the other chopped into small pieces

1/2 tsp pink Himalayan sea salt

1/2 tsp freshly grated black pepper

2 Tbls almond meal

Method:

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Grease a baking sheet and lay the garlic glove that you thinly sliced over it. Mix all remaining ingredients in a bowl except the string beans and almond meal. Stir to mix. Put the almond meal on a plate. Toss beans in the bowl with oil mixture and mix until well coated. Then roll the beans in the almond meal. Transfer to the baking sheet and bake for 10 minuets and then broil for 3-5 minuets until brown and toasty. Then enjoy these garlicy strings of goodness and remember to thank me later!! 😉

xoxo,

SSP

Be sure to click the image below and follow me on instagram! @caracarin

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Rays of Sunshine Juice- A Color Study

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(Fruit- photos by me, no filter. Runway shots SS13.)

The level of excitement that coats over me like a paint brush when I see food this bright and colorful is ridiculous. A similar reaction to a kid in a candy store might be a good analogy. Squeals, squirms and wiggles of joy. I mean SERIOUSLY, look at those blood oranges. Have you ever seen anything so beautiful?  Why would we ever want to genetically modify anything when something so lovely is created organically? Natures Candy!  I gathered these lovely ingredients at the farmers market and made a juice that I enjoyed with my bestie! This is a level of orange even Lindsey Lohan couldn’t replicate! #justsayin

Benefits of Rays of Sunshine Juice

  • Oranges– Protects against certain types of cancers, lowers cholesterol, protects skin, lowers risk for viral infections and alkalizes the body
  • Carrots- See my post here
  • Tomatoes– Vitamin A, C, K, Folate, B6, and prevents risk of cancer
  • Ginger- See my post here
  • Nectarines– loaded with Lutein an antioxidant power source that is thought to slow cognitive decline, protect against free radicals

What you need: (any quantity is fine, no right or wrong here)

5 carrots, peeled

1/5 Tbsl ginger, peeled and sliced

4 nectarines, sliced and pit removed

2 tomatos, sliced

5 blood oranges

Method:

Gather ingredients and toss into a juicer! Feel free to use a citrus juicer for the oranges or slice in half and toss the whole fruit in the juicer! Feel the radiant sun absorbed into your body through this lovely juice!

xoxo,

SSP

Ginger Ale- Freshly Brewed and Sugar Free

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Soda is one of those things that I have given up almost entirely over the last three years but there is something about Ginger Ale that seems less threatening then a coke (i.e. ginger). I decided it needed to be made at home using fresh ginger and xylitol instead of sugar. Sugar is another one of those things I try to stay away from completely (try being the key word) as well! Ginger Ale was first created in 1851 in Ireland  but the well known Canada Dry Ginger Ale was created by John J. McLaughlin in the early 1900’s. I think it is the best of all sodas. Somebody grab the Makers, its time for a Whisky Gingers! Happy Sunday!

Benefits of Ginger

  • Anti-inflamatory properties that can help with joint pain- AKA post night in high heels remedy.
  • Remedy for motion sickness or upset stomachs
  • Strengthens your immunity and helps fight against certain cancers

What you need:

1 1/2 cups chopped peeled ginger

2 cups water

3/4 cups xylitol (or sugar if you must)

1 quart chilled seltzer of club soda

3 Tbls fresh lime juice

Method:

Put ginger in a small saucepan with the water a cook at a low simmer, covered, for 45 minuets. Remove pot from the heat and steep for 20 minuets still covered. Strain the mixture in to a bowl using cheesecloth or a sieve. (I rubber banded a cheesecloth over a bowl and poured the liquid in slowly, see image above) Squeeze the ginger while in the cheesecloth removing as much liquid as possible. Then put the ginger liquid back in the sauce pan with the xylitol (or preferred sweetener), add a pinch of salt and stir over a low heat until xylitol has fully dissolved. Pour syrup in a jar with the lid on and chill in the fridge until cold.

Assembly:

Mix Ginger Syrup with Seltzer and lime juice. To make one drink use 1/2 cup syrup, 3 teaspoons lime juice and 1 1.2 cup seltzer and adjust to your own taste! Enjoy out in the sunshine!

 xoxo,

SSP

Radlicious Spinach Salad with Shaved Radish and Agave Mustard Dressing

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Radish is an interesting vegetable that I would like to try to get creative with. Obviously, shaving and tossing into a salad is, well predictable but it’s a start. Today was the first time I ever even bought radish – and I bought a whole bag! I didn’t plan this salad out except that I wanted to shave a radish. As you can see, I am on a little bit of a shaved veggie kick. Check out my first two recipe posts here and here. No apologies for thinking I should add radish and mini bell peppers to the list. So Voila! This salad happened. It was so unexpectedly good that I had to post it. I photograph most of my meals but some don’t even make it to instagram, let alone on the blog. This belonged on the blog!

Benefits of radish

  • Great for your liver and stomach because of their cleansing and detoxifying properties– Good, cause my liver hates me sometimes- read Wino
  • Radishes are a natural diuretic- perfect for getting bikini ready  😉
  • Red Radish contains high amounts of Lycopene which can dramatically lower your risks for cancer.

What you need: Salad 

2 cups washed spinach

1/2 cup quinoa- I used red

1/4 cup shaved red radish

1/4 cup chopped tomatoes

1/4 cup shaved sweet baby peppers

1/4 cup garbanzo beans

1/2 avocado sliced

What you need: Agave Mustard Dressing

1/2 cup dijon mustard

1/3 cup agave nectar

2 Tbl extra virgin olive oil

1 Tbl balsamic vinegar

salt and pepper to taste

Method:

combine all salad ingredients into a bowl to your linking. In a small bowl whisk together the mustard and agave. Slowly drizzle the olive oil and then the vinegar. Add salt and pepper to taste and use as much dressing as you want and maybe save some for later! Enjoy!

xoxo,

SSP

Summer Goals

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Today is the first day of summer and I wanted to set some goals of things I wanted to make sure that I accomplished.  I should note that I am off to Thailand next week and plan to tackle some of them whilst there. Goal setting is an important part of my life, something that I learned from my days at Lululemon as an educator (more on that later) and I thought it would be fun to do a more playful list of goals as oppose to one that includes graduating from college or getting a job in California (done and done). I was inspired by Emily.

  1. Start my first urban herb garden – even if it only has one herb to start
  2. Take a cooking class
  3. Start and finish two DIY home improvement projects- my mirror and intimates drawers
  4. Have all day, girls only beach days
  5. Finally master handstand in yoga class
  6. Make homemade beauty products like a scrub or mask using summer produce
  7. Make infused popsicles for a party – maybe add some alcohol 🙂
  8. Walk to the beach to catch the sunset at least once a week- I live a little over a mile away so no excuses
  9. Somehow make it on to a sail boat
  10. Take a mini vacation to San Diego or Santa Barbara for a change of scenery

Happy Summer Solstice. May your days be warm and bright.

xoxo,

SSP