Friday, September 11, 2015

Vegan Mofo: Focus On a Nutrient

Today's Vegan Mofo prompt asks bloggers to focus on a nutrient. And I've been meaning to post a review for my friend Alan Roettinger's new book, The Almond Milk Cookbook, so this seems like a great time to talk about vitamin E.

Almonds are an awesome source of vitamin E, providing 173 percent of your RDA per 100 grams of almonds. Don't ask me how many almonds are in 100 grams because I'm horrible with metrics. But even still, they have lots of vitamin E, and that helps us fight free radicals, which helps ease the effects of aging. I don't know about y'all, but I'm getting to that age where I have to start worrying about wrinkles and unfamiliar aches and pains. I'll ward of aging in any healthy way I can! Vitamin E also works with the flavonoids in almond skins to ward off heart disease. Win!

Alan's new book is filled with more than 100 recipes using homemade almond milk. He starts with the basics — making almond milk, almond cream, and even almond sour cream! And then you use that to make other recipes in the book — smoothies, soups, pasta dishes, veggie sides, and healthy desserts. I started with the Basic Almond Milk — just soaked almonds and water in my Vitamix.

I don't have a nut bag, and I'm out of cheese cloths. But I didn't realize this until after I'd whirred the almonds up in the blender. So I strained out the pulp using a thin rag. I made a bit of a mess, but it got the job done.

I used some of the almond milk (that recipe makes about 4 cups) in this Zucchini Pappardelle with Corn Cream.

The almond milk is cooked with corn, chives, onion, and garlic, and then it's all blended up in the Vitamix (you don't need a fancy blender for these recipes btw ... that's just what I have). For the noodles, you blanche zucchini strips. Alan recommends slicing them into flat, wide noodles — pappardelle-style. But I'll use any excuse to use my spiralizer, so that's what I did here.

This tasted like a zuke noodle version of fettucine alfredo. Delicious! And I loved that the zuke noodles were cooked. I usually eat them raw, but they're much more comforting when cooked, even though they lose a little volume.

I had some almond milk left, so this morning, I whipped up a Vanilla Date Smoothie from Alan's cookbook after my little one-mile run.

I'm still dealing with runner's knee, so I'm currently focusing on shorter runs because those don't hurt. I'd rather be packing on the distance, but this is the hand I'm dealt for now. At least I'm running! Anyway, this smoothie has the Basic Almond Milk, a frozen banana, a medjool date, and vanilla extract (subbed out for the vanilla bean in the recipe). I added a scoop of Manitoba Harvest Vanilla Hemp Pro 70 powder to make it a meal.

I make a LOT of smoothies, typically with storebought almond or cashew milk. And having the fresh almond milk in this made SUCH A HUGE DIFFERENCE. It was so creamy and delicious. I could go for another one right now!

Yay for vitamin E!


spencer said...

i wonder if zucchini noodles would be good seared in a hot pan or grilled? i haven't tried the raw ones since zucchini's pretty unpalatable to me until a lot of the water is cooked off, but it maybe could work this way.

Julie said...

The zucchini with corn cream looks great! :)

Tea and Sympatico said...

I'm really interested in the idea of making my own almond milk. Your smoothie looks delicious. I make cashew cream in my Vitamix so I should branch out and give some other nuts a go.