Introducing CHEEKY ‘lil MONKEYS!

I guarantee these are one of a kind… how do I know?
2013-04-14 17.57.23

These little bites are supposed to be a melding of my husband’s and my unique likes and tastes merged into unique oneness–yes, in a cookie thingie… LOL!
2013-05-28 17.46.48

Don’t ask me why, but my husby calls me Cheeky ‘lil Monkey, so I figured that name would be most appropriate as it also suggests some of the ingredients in the morsel of low-glycemic goodness 🙂 I will say that the majority of sweetening comes from the fruity middle and erythritol, so not too sugar spikey at all! The mini choc-chips (from Enjoy Life) do have sugar in them, though…

This was the first time making it since the inspiration was hatched while on an overnight film shoot together…
Me: I want to make a treat to share with everyone on set that’s like us.
Jon: What?
Me: I’m going to call it Cheeky ‘lil Monkeys.
Jon: Okay– you have to put a secret ingredient that makes people wonder what’s in it.
Me: Got it…yes!

Two days later…the shape and ingredients were hatched in my noggin’ …and it came together this afternoon in between cooking other dishes. 🙂 Gotta make the most of my time in the kitchen–multitasking makes me feel that baking is a productive endeavor…and thereby so gratifying!! 🙂

How would I describe it?
… ‘lil crumbly cookies married by a rummy middle melding together a flavor palate to ponder. Yes, that’s exactly it! It is, of course, vegan and gluten-free. My only critique–I want to come up with a way to make it less crumbly and a bit more chewy, but then again, the delicateness of the shortbread-like texture makes it more distinctive to me somehow… OH… and there’s even sea kelp!! You cannot taste it, but the goodness is there! yeay!

Feel free to guess at the other “secret” ingredients!
muahahahhahaaaaa! 🙂

Jam in some NUT JAMMERS (GF Vegan bars)

2013-05-24 13.17.21
My husby loves this treat and so do most folks who get a bite of it… this batch is made for a cast and crew of the feature I am working on as a way to sustain energy through the long working days and nights… Yes, there are some very brutal overnight shoots… my last one was 6pm to 6am and we finished the martini shot just as the birds began to chirp in the day. This week’s overnight will be 4pm-4am to accommodate the essential night time vibe for the moody and dramatic scenes.

Well, anyhoo… here’s one of the treats… the other was one already posted on the blog called AMAZEBALLS because no matter what version you make, you’ll find them amazzzzzzzzeballlssssss! 🙂 really! try ’em… I love ’em, too…

Nut Jammers (aka Jane’s PBBJ)

Organic only, please
2 cup soaked and cooked garbanzo beans (can sub northern beans, if necessary or if preferred.)
1/3 cup quick oats with dash of ground flax seeds
½ cup peanut butter (or almond, cashew)
1 tsp baking powder, 1/4 baking soda
¾ tsp sea salt
¼ Himalayan pink salt
¾ cup sweetener (succanat or palm/coconut sugar) –adjust if you put in agave or sweetened preserves
½ to ¾ cup jam/preserves of choice
semi roughly crushed salted, roasted peanuts (or coordinated nut of choice)

Blend everything together (except jam) in food processor or vita-mix (may be tough, but keep pressing through.) If you must, dribble bit of water or agave to help, but will take longer to bake out that moisture later. It’s alright if it’s not totally smooth–works well with chunky peanut butter. Are you a smooth or crunchy nut butter lover? I LOVE CRUNCHY

Put most of thick dough in pan and press down gently press down, I like to layer a bit of jam, then put the rest of dough crumbled and gently pressed down again atop. Finally, spread rest of jam on top, sprinkle chopped nuts and sort of mix it into jam.

Bake 35-50 minutes depending on if water/agave was added and how much layering you did with jam. Just keep checking… it just just barely start pulling away from sides of pan when it’s ready…and when cooled, the jam should be thickened like a gel.

And Voila—an optionally low-glycemic (if you use palm sugar or erythritol) and virtually gluten-free (depending on the oats) satisfying treat. You can look for GF oats, and check for certified GF nuts, too…

Most people will never know that it’s soooo much healthier than the average bar! SHHHH!

…and here is the cherry chocolate version of my Amazeballs… not too sweet and slightly bitter kiss of cacao :0)
2013-05-24 13.46.39

Have a blessed Memorial Weekend!… “How important it is for us to recognize and celebrate our heroes and she-roes!” M.Angelou

“Slowing down d…

“Slowing down does not prevent getting to the goal. It just makes the circumnavigation much more pleasant.”- Skip Moen

These words are worth taking in…as are the larger body of words that gave these last parting ones more poignancy…

Fish and Snakes – Rewind
by Skip Moen, D. Phil.

I waited, waited for YHWH; And He inclined to me, and heard my cry. Psalm 40:2 (Hebrew Text)

Inclined – Natah.  Nun-Tet-Hey.  That’s how you spell this Hebrew verb.  The picture?  What is revealed (what comes) from life surrounded.  Actually, the pictures are fish darting through water (life activity) and a snake coiled around something (surround).  OK?  So, consider this imagery and ask yourself, “Does God surround my life?”  If He doesn’t, do you think He will incline toward you?

The verb means more than incline.  It means to stretch forth, to bend toward, to pay attention to, to establish, to turn toward, to show hesed toward someone. As God stretches forth the heavens, we live under His sheltering sky.  He is our Father.  He bends toward His children.  When our lives are surrounded by His hesed, we are cared for.  He puts His arms around us and listens to us.  The doubled verb (to wait) indicates an attitude of patience on behalf of the psalmist.  While God has all the time necessary to accomplish His purposes, we tend to expect His purposes to be completed within our temporal frame.  The psalmist reminds us that a double portion of waiting is needed if we are to enjoy God’s attention.  God is never in a hurry.  The state of haste in our lives often runs right past His plans.  He pays attention to those who exercise the spiritual discipline of expectant hopefulness since this discipline demonstrates trust in His word.

We all want God to bend toward us.  We all want His undivided attention.  In fact, we often press Him to respond.  We are like those people in an elevator who keep pushing the button when the door doesn’t close fast enough.  Yeshua reminds us that our frenzy for answers displays an attitude of anxiety inconsistent with the hesed of the Lord.  Seeking the Kingdom is a corollary of rowing with hope.

If we wait patiently for YHWH and row with the expectation of His fatherly attention, then no decision we make can be a mistake.  When we row in alignment, we follow His exhibition of trustworthiness.  When we row off course, He guides us back with gentle corrections or chastisement.  Either way, we can’t miss the final goal.  The trick is simply to wait until He turns toward us.

Patience is more than a virtue.  It is a necessary component of living the biblical worldview.  A man without patience is a man without a word from the Lord.  Such a man has accelerated past the next turn in life, moving too fast to see the road signs of warning.  Rush hour is a symptom of self-importance.  Natah surrounds.  Its direction is a circle.  Slowing down does not prevent getting to the goal.  It just makes the circumnavigation much more pleasant.

Topical Index: natah, incline, pay attention, turn toward, Psalm 40:2


Recycling kookoo head

a funny reminder to go as green as possible--eat more plants and recycle more

a funny reminder to go as green as possible–eat more plants and recycle more

I realized I was a RECYCLING KOOKOO HEAD when I noticed normal grocery purchases are more and more often motivated by how gift-worthy and reusable the container it comes can be…

So, I mention this to my husby…and he gives me a look like, “uh, duh… yea, you are.” Hmm-FINE!… I am happy to be kookoo about this, although I am letting myself be a bit more lax and not actually taking every item to recycling centers myself. LOL!

So, all this to say… I had some bottles from other probiotic drinks I bought–including Kevita (which I love) so I made a new flavored batch of Kombucha today… my “C-Spike” brew … I loved the last one. It was so bubbly and refreshing…and the little bubbles just kept effervescing gently to maintain the nice carbonated boost without running over. It was as perfect a brew as I have had store-bought or home-spun. I wondered if it had to do with the bottles–I used BPA-free plastic ones or the actual ratio of freshly-pressed citrus juices and ginger pulp. This time, I used both glass and plastic as an experiment (plus, it was all I had for recyclables… SO MY GIFTING GOT LIMITED BY MY LIMITED STASH OF RECYCLABLES!!!! ARGH!!!)

So anyway, the point of this is to offer a few great links to how to make your own Kombucha…and to encourage others to be recycling kookoos, too! 🙂

My fav is this link to a gal’s thriving scobies… she taught me how to make my own and she makes wonderful and unique batches found in select health-food grocers:

and here’s a new article I just saw that inspired me to get my bottles filled today!



2013-04-13 11.49.59 I love coming up with treats that are good for me and great for gifting. In fact, it is usually the cravings of others that gets my ambitious healthy brain gears turning…
2013-04-14 13.11.04

Firstly, my hubby’s birthday was a time to share yum things with guests who popped by for dinner and to honor my hubby’s wishes for me not to go overboard baking people treats, I was a bit devious and skipped baking to handmake chocolate dipped organic dried fruits: black mission figs with cayenne dusted over the rum-infused belgian dark chocolate and apricots with crushed pistachios and ceylon cinnamon. One of each per couple that attended. I didn’t bake!! LOL… my hubby said I am too sneaky for my own good… all out of love, though, right?!

Second gift worthy goodness: I made this for a bestie for a dinner outing we were having… she enjoyed it and so I made it again for a intown guest who has an avocado every morning for her breakfast… she loved it, too! And, of course, I set aside some for me… mmmeeee happppyyyy!
2013-04-12 16.36.49

TADA! my raw, avocado carob pudding sweetened only by soaked dates topped with a berry soaked chia seeds, sliced bananas, and soaked/dehydrated walnut. Sooo decadent and yet a perfect way to start the day– I call this MY BREAKFAST OF CHAMPIONS!!!

Easy to make!
1 large avocado, 3/4-1 cup raw carob or cacao powder, 3/4 cup of soaked dates with water just enough to cover them, pinch of cinnamon, and dash of Himalayan salt– throw in food processor until smooooooooooth. Have bit of water or date soaked water on hand in case it is too thick. If the dates are not sweet enough, you can add stevia or agave or other sweetener of choice to taste! You may end up eating a lot of it, so make some extra!!!  Personally, I prefer to use whole food sweeteners like dates or bananas. or local honey… etc because it is honestly better for our body than an extracted sweetener.

Also, if you use raw cacao, I recommend adding superfruit powders lucuma and/or mesquite (teaspoon of each) — it makes the flavor profile even more decadent and rich!

Soak chia seeds in a berry puree or organic juices of berries and make sure it is thick and not too runny.. also great for making parfaits or to fix a nagging sweet tooth. The omegas and fiber in them will help combat cravings. Not too hard, right?! ENJOY THIS!!  You may end up eating most of it before it gets assembled into something pretty as pictured… haha –chef’s perogative, I say!

After all, as good can something can be, it is so much better when the delights are shared!

My Lemon went Bald!

Do you ever think about how you can make the most out of everything? Your life, your days, your hopes, your budget…etc… then how about starting to make the most out of EVERYTHING else? Don’t you feel great when you redeemed every part and moment of your time and energy…?

So how simply great to if and when we WASTE NOT and mindfully use every part of everything we consume. It would honor our Creator, give due care and diligence to the world around us, and make sure we are stewarding what is available to us now so that it will be available for others later… (see bottom of this entry to get a great composting link!)

Okay.. that’s a big picture idea that I want to break down to little practical things… like a lemon for starters…
2013-04-21 08.23.30

I have been coming up with fun ways to use all parts of produce (until I get a composting bin of my own of sign up for a service of some kind) since my juice fast and this morning I made sure I practiced that. So, all I did was ZEST the ENTIRE LEMON and set it in the freezer for future usage (I always love lemon desserts and lemon infused anything!). Then I just sliced up the rest for my morning tea… and it releases the lemon juice much more readily this way (BIG BONUS!)… Plus, this is a great way to just have slices ready to go into my Vitamix for a great detox smoothie like this one… 🙂2012-11-23 10.49.39

This is a lovely refresher:
one large apple, kale or other greens, celery, cucumber, lemon wedge, apple cider vinegar, parsley, and if someone needs a sweeter taste, add raw honey or agave. …or adding it into a fiberful raw fruity chewy strip. This one has julienned apples, chia seeds, lemon zest, and ginger. Mixed it all up and dehydrated for a day.

2013-04-10 21.09.58

Next time, I might just puree all the ingredients to make more of the classic fruity strip instead of a textured one.

AND as promised… here is the cool composting link with lots of information and resources if you live in LA (city):

If you live in LA County, here’s another site: