Welcome to Lexie's Kitchen & Living. I'm glad you stopped by and hope you enjoy the five years of recipes and ramblings collected here.

The inspiration for this site was my son. To learn about our journey to restore his intestinal and neurological health read here

Follow a gluten-free, dairy-free, egg-free, soy-free diet? Take a peek at my cookbook.  

 

 

 


 

  

 

Friday
Jan282011

Hawaii: Mulberry Compote & The Shack

The morning started with plates of crepes topped with Cinnamon Mulberry Compote. We picked the mulberries yesterday from the two trees down in “the alley.” Mulberry trees are productive, adaptable, fast growing and trouble free. I’d liken the fruit to blackberries—black/red, sweet, tart and great for pies and smoothies.

For the compote, I simmered about a cup of berries, a tidge of water, a bit of honey, some liquid stevia and a good shake of cinnamon then whizzed the mixture in the blender and served it atop quinoa crepes (made half a batch). Mmmm ... the perfect breakfast to fuel the kids for a day of play outside. 

A sweet and tart mulberry.My mom picking mulberries. The easy way ... lay a sheet on the ground and give the tree a good shake!This winter my parents built an 8x12 foot “cowboy shack” at the bottom of their acreage. Today we ventured down there to check it out and I immediately fell in love with this little hideout.

It’s the kind of place to be alone in. A place to read, meditate, to listen to your thoughts.

My parents built the “shack” to double as a coffee drying shed during the damp and misty spells. There is a whopping 500-foot difference in elevation from the top to the bottom of their property that makes for a significant difference in climate. The cowboy shack, below the fog line, now provides a secondary drying spot for the 1500 pounds of Hamakua (Arabica) coffee cherry my mom and dad handpick and dry each year. If you live in Denver, you can find their coffee at Kaladi Brothers Coffee.

A eucalyptus forest frames the Pacific Ocean.

Don't you love these tie-backs! Copper wire and a dry wall screw—voila!

One day we will get back to our "little cowboy shack in Paauilo, Hawaii"

 

Thursday
Jan272011

Hawaii: Kiddie Beach and Provision Up

The kiddie beach | Spencer Beach State Park on the Big Island.When I was in high school I wouldn't have been caught in my pink bikini at this beach. Mind you, it's not a nudie beach, but known as the kiddie beach—Spencer Beach State Park.

Fast forward 20 years and I am cool with it. After all, I am the mother of two kiddies—both of whom do not know how to swim. If you're planning a trip to the Big Island and want a small, tame beach where the kids can frolick in the shallow waters sans big waves, hit Spencer.

We spent the morning at Spencer enjoying the ample shade and good sand for building castles. And bonus, today there was local guy walking the beach handing out tangerines—I love the aloha spirit!

After sun and fun we headed back up the hill to Waimea (Kamuela) to provision up. There are three grocery stores in this ranching town; KTA, Foodland and Healthways Natural Foods.

Healthways Natural Foods & Deli in the ranching town of Waimea.If you're visiting the island and need food for your modified diet, you'll definitely want to check out Healthways—but expect to pay 30% or more than you do on the mainland for those natural foods! From bulk chia and Tinkyada rice pasta to Udi's and Rudi's, you'll find it all at Healthways!

Buy in bulk at Healthways.

Ezekial, Rudi's, Udi's and even Hemp Bread!

I am a fan of Bob's Red Mill flours and mixes. Here it is in Hawaii!

 

Wednesday
Jan262011

Good Morning Hawaii

Good morning! The view from my parents' home at an elevation of 2000 feet on the slopes of Mauna Kea. Woke with the sun and the crow of a rooster. The first morning in Hawaii is always an early one. My mom brewed some coffee and once fully awake we were out the door to explore the yard and play with her seven, yes you read that right, 7 dogs (three chihuahua terriers, two baussies, one Australian shepherd, and one black and tan dachsund).

Here is a sampling of the flora growing in my parents' yard—a beautiful rainbow of color. 

The rainbow of color picked from the front yard. I counted over 30 varieties of flowers in bloom.It was a relaxing day. My boys are in heaven. Dirt piles, farm chores, no down jackets. Picked mulberries and guava. Tomorrow we'll head to the beach where we'll really thaw out.

When I was a kid I always loved finding patches of sleeping grass. Touch the leaves of this "grass" and they magically close!

Tuesday
Jan252011

Grab Your Swimsuit & Sunscreen

When this post publishes, my boys and I will be high over the Pacific bound for the Big Island of Hawaii.

Hawaii is where I was born and raised and where my parents still live. I haven't been back for three years. This trip is long overdue. We lament that Dad couldn't make it, but someone's got to stay home and shovel the snow (thanks honey!).

Knowing I would miss my husband and my dear readers terribly, I have decided to you bring you along—virtually at least.

For the next three weeks I will blog from Hawaii. I plan to allow the activities of my days to inspire my posts and will guarantee you a peek at the Hawaii I love. The people, the culture, the food, the sights.

So put on that swimsuit, slather on some sunscreen, slip into your flip-flops (aka "slippas") and let's go!

The Hamakua Coast | Protea flowers mom grows | The neighbor's sheep [cute!] | Drying macadamia nuts | Waipio Valley | Hawaii Preparatory Academy horse round-up | Wild horses in Waipio | Mom and dad's front yard | Surf's up!

Sunday
Jan232011

Squashberry Smoothie

 

Talk about smoothie bliss! I am in it. Over at g-freemom there is a tempting line-up of nourishing smoothies that can be whipped up in a matter of minutes. When I was invited to participate in g-freemom's D-tox January blog event I jumped at the chance—I L-O-V-E smoothies. Then came the tough decision; which smoothie would I share? I have a handful of favorites—a pink one, a green one, a purple one, an orange one. I tend to group my smoothies into colors. Odd you say? Well here's why. Blend greens and purples and reds and you're bound to end up with brown. I'm sorry, but drinking a thick concoction of brown—unless it's chocolate—repulses me (and best of luck convincing that picky four-year old to try it). What we eat and drink should appeal to the eye as much as it does to the taste buds.

Maybe it's the art student in me, but the color wheel always comes to mind as I throw smoothie makings into the blender. For a green smoothie I stick to greens and yellows (say kale, almonds and yellow summer squash), for a purple smoothie I stick to purples and whites (say blueberries, cashews and peeled cucumber) and so on.

Today I'm in a "coral" mood and that brings to mind my Squashberry Smoothie—a blend of red, orange and a bit of yellow. Squash in a smoothie? Say what? Promise. You will be pleasantly surprised by this mixture of spaghetti squash, carrot and strawberries. And as the old adage goes, it not only tastes good but is good for you. Here's why:

Spaghetti squash, a low sugar winter squash, is an excellent source of dietary fiber. This fiber acts as an “intestinal broom,” moving toxins through and out of the body.

Strawberries are loaded with potent anti-oxidants and vitamin C. Essential to any detoxification program, vitamin C is needed by the body to make an important substance called glutathione. Glutathione helps the liver flush toxins.

Apple cider vinegar (and I use Bragg's) is rich in natural minerals, vitamins and enzymes. The cleansing properties of apple cider vinegar have been recognized for centuries. It is said to stimulate circulation, break up mucus in the body and aid in detoxifying the liver.

Carrots add an extra dose of dietary fiber, antioxidants and minerals to this smoothie.

These ingredients pull together to do what a good cleansing smoothie should do—aid in the elimination of toxins and waste from the body. Detoxification is one of the basic functions of the human body. During this process, the body eliminates its toxic load through the kidneys, colon, liver, lungs, lymph and skin.

Today our bodies bear a pretty heavy toxic load resulting from pollution in the water, food and air. If these ingested toxins are not flushed out, the body will manufacture additional fat cells to surround and encapsulate them. This fat accumulates, compromises our health and leads to disease.

By nature, the body was designed to cleanse itself, but give it every advantage. Eating good, pure, wholesome food is the best place to start. And a smoothie a day can make a difference. The five o'clock cocktail was so 1950's. After a hard days work how about greeting your husband or wife with tall, green smoothie. Their body will thank you for it!

Squashberry Smoothie

Gluten-Free | Casein-Free | Citrus-Free | Corn-Free | Dairy-Free | Egg-Free | Fish-Free | Nightshade-Free | Peanut-Free | Potato-Free | Rice-Free | Shellfish-Free | Soy-Free | Tree Nut-Free | Wheat-Free | Grain-Free | Sesame-Free | Sweetener-Free | Yeast-free | GFCF | Vegetarian | Vegan

Serves: 2
Prep Time: 3 minutes

Ingredients:

1 cup filtered WATER
1 organic CARROT, scrubbed
1/2 cup cooked SPAGHETTI SQUASH
1/2 cup STRAWBERRIES or RASPBERRIES
10-15 drops LIQUID STEVIA (we like Vanilla Creme)
1 packet EMERGEN-C (flavor of choice)
1-2 teaspoons BRAGG'S APPLE CIDER VINEGAR (optional)
6 large ICE CUBES

Directions:

1. Add all ingredients except ice to a high-powered blender. Blend on high until smooth.
2. Add ice cubes and blend until smooth.

Notes:

1. The blender: One of the best investment you can make for the kitchen and your health is the purchase of a high-powered blender such as a Blentec® (my personal favorite) or a Vita-mix®. While the average blender leaves chunks of kale in a smoothie and between your teeth, a high-powered blender completely pulverizes it!

2. Additions: Be adventurous! Add 1/2 peeled cucumber, 1/2 peeled lemon or 1/4 cup cooked or raw beet.