Sunday, October 25, 2009

More Juice Tips and Recipes

There are only a few things that I'm completely evangelical about and juicing is one of them. I can't express emphatically enough how much juicing has helped change my health. In fact, it's the foundation on which I've built a new healthier life. I cook with lots of veggies and I eat plenty of fresh fruit every day but there's no way that my husband and I would eat as much fresh produce each day that's really needed for optimal health. The juicer ensures that we get the nutrients and enzymes every day. Here's a great article about how juicing=happiness.

Contrary to popular belief, making freshly pressed vegetable and fruit juice is pretty easy and quite tasty. All it takes is a bit of planning and a few good recipes. I always try to maximize health benefits as well as flavor. The basic recipe is carrots, celery, apples, ginger, lemons, fresh turmeric root and spinach. The other produce that I rotate are summer squash, zucchini, fresh beet root with the green tops and kale. I also add a handful of fresh herbs from the garden depending on the time of year.

For a week's worth of juice for two people (approximately 32 ounces), I buy the following produce, organic and/or local whenever possible...
  • 5 pounds carrots
  • 2 large celery stalks, not just the hearts
  • 3-5 pounds of apples (varied by what looks best that week, some get eaten out of hand)
  • 7 lemons
  • a pound of fresh ginger
  • a pound of fresh turmeric root
  • a pound of pre-washed spinach greens
  • 14 small summer squash or 7 large green zucchini or a bag of kale or 3-5 beets
You can add any vegetable or fruit that you want like asparagus, sweet potato, broccoli, bell peppers, garlic, tomatoes, strawberries, grapes, clementines. The possibilities are endless. Juicing is great way to use up any veggies or fruit that may not have gotten eaten at the peak so nothing goes to waste. There are plenty of juice recipes to be found, here's the link to the Google search. Most juicers will come with a recipe book, too.

I wash all the produce for the week in a sink full of water and produce wash, taking special care with the beets and beet greens as they are very gritty. I let the water drain and then rinse well. All the produce gets divided into seven zip top bags and put in the fridge. I cut the ginger and the beets into equal sized pieces but use the beet greens the first day so they don't wilt. The pre-washed spinach doesn't need to be washed or divided, I just leave it in the container and take what I need at the moment. The whole process takes less than 2o minutes, time well spent to have everything ready during the week.

Each day, I take out the bag of produce and greens, run it all through the juicer, stir it up, pour and drink. Then I wash the juicer which really only takes a couple of minutes. When cleaning the strainer basket, hold it upside down under the running water while rubbing it with the scrubby side of the sponge. This is the secret to fast cleaning. If you do it the other way around, you just end up pushing the little bits of pulp deeper into the mesh.

Take the plunge and get a juicer. Sure, it's a small investment in money and time but at the end of the day, your health is worth it!

3 comments:

  1. Veeeery interesting. I'm pretty much a total novice when it comes to juicing. In fact when I saw your title, I assumed it was like apple vs grape ^-^

    Thanks for the info-definitely something to consider!

    ReplyDelete
  2. I love fresh squeezed juice! I don’t have a juicer though. It sounds like fun!

    ReplyDelete
  3. thank you so much for this post! i am soooooo excited to start juicing when my juicer arrives!! all thanks to u! i've read about juicing a lot before but when i began reading your blog, i couldn't seem to stop thinking about it. my husband even agreed to give it a day. i'm excited to give my 2 year old fresh juice.. and sneak in some veggies.

    ReplyDelete