Believe it or not I’ve had this post jogging around in my head and saved in my drafts for well over a year now! Two years ago I was given a juicer for Christmas from my mother (I had wished for it and Santa made it happen!). I’ve been happily making fresh juice ever since and getting the hubs to ‘choke’ down all manner of brown, green and dark juices. Recently, we stumbled across the documentary “Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead” on Nitflix* and watched it with my folks and then watched it again with the hubs. Everyone was amazed by the film, except me of course, it only repeated what I had been saying, fresh juice is good for you. The documentary in a sentence: two men lose a lot of weight and get healthy all while drinking juice.
My mom decided to try a juice fast and stuck to it for the three days. She clearly was detoxing for the first two days. She suffered from a headache that just wouldn’t go away, but on the third day she said she felt pretty good. Mom has decided she would do a fifteen day modified fast later on and I couldn’t be more proud of her willingness to give it a go. Truly, I’d join her if I wasn’t trying to keep mega-baby breastfed right now.
ANYWAYS – Over a year ago I wanted to write a simple post about juicing and here it is.
I use a L’Equip pulp ejecting juicer. It’s very simple to set up and operate and pretty easy to clean.
I do most of my shopping at Whole Paycheck Foods because it’s closest to us and because it offers better produce than any of the other stores in our area. This summer of course, I will be purchasing as much of our produce as possible from the Farmer’s Market and local growers. If you’re juicing you want to try to buy organic because most of the time you’re grinding up and juicing the skins and peels which, unless they are organic, are treated with pesticides and other chemicals.
A quick juicing primer: Take the zest off of citrus fruits but keep as much of the white pithy parts as possible. Wash everything before you juice it. Consider taking the seeds out of apples and pears before juicing them (ahem…arsenic). Remove the parts that you wouldn’t normally eat (green leafy part of strawberries, mushy/moldy parts, pineapple skin). Cut the produce into a shape that will fit down the shoot, as needed. And very importantly, make sure there is a cup or pitcher under the spout before you start juicing, you’ll only make that mistake once.
I made a bunch of juice this morning for the next two days. It took about 10 minutes to get everything clean and pared down and then about 3 minutes to juice it and then another 5 minutes to clean up.
What I have here: Carrots, Cucumber, Spinach, Kale, Celery, Black Grapes, Beets, Apples, Strawberries, Lemons & Oranges
I usually make a few simple blends that I can later mix together as desired.
Strawberries and Lemons (for strawberry lemonade): equal parts lemon juice and strawberry juice
Grape/Beet/Apple/Strawberry: one quart of grapes, one very large beat, one apple and about 6 strawberries
Celery/Cucumber/Carrot/Apple/Spinach/Kale/Lemon:4 stalks celery, 1 large cucumber, 2 carrots, 1 green apple, 1.5 cups of baby greens, half a lemon
Carrot/Orange:equal parts carrot juice and orange juice
This is the type of juice we’ll be giving to our baby. My hope is that when he thinks of juice it will be this and not some electric blue HFCS laced liquid that has a cartoon character pasted on the outside of the carton.
I hope you’re looking at this and wondering how they taste. Well, to be honest, they taste better than they look, usually. Obviously, when you mix a little carrot-orange juice with a green blend of cucumber, celery and kale the juice looks, uummm, brown. But it is sweet and fresh and vibrant!
There are so many more things you can add to juice that I didn’t have on hand this morning: Ginger, Fennel, Tomato, Pineapple, Mango, Peppers, really I could go on and on. Just think of all the treats you could make! This summer we will be making fresh Bloody Mary mix with a blend of tomatoes, celery, and fresh horseradish. I think we’ll use our ice cream maker to blend fresh juice sorbets and make popcicles for the little guy!
So here’s the question again: Do you Juice? Perhaps you might want to try it!