a RAWky road

Food, health and fitness advice while vegan in a sad, S.A.D world.


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Gardein Seven Grain Crispy Tenders

Gardein is a wholesome range of tasty plant-based foods with a meaty texture. It’s made from soy, wheat and pea proteins, vegetables and ancient grains (quinoa, amaranth, millet and kamut®). It’s free of cholesterol, trans and saturated fats. Gardein is also animal and dairy free, meaning all Gardein products are vegan and certified by Vegan Action. They also only use ‘identity-preserved’ soy protein (which basically means, it helps to ensure us that our soy protein is not genetically modified). That being said, I was intrigued to try these faux chicken tenders.

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Ingredients:

gardein: water, soy protein isolate*, vital wheat gluten*, expeller pressed/canola oil, organic ancient grain flour (kamut ®, amaranth, millet, quinoa), natural flavor (from plant sources), modified vegetable gum, yeast extract, sea salt, organic cane sugar, potato starch, onion powder, garlic powder, pea protein, vinegar, carrot fiber, beetroot fiber, extractives of paprika and turmeric. seven grain breading: wheat flour*, water, rice flour, oat bran, oats, salt, sugar, spices, millet flour, amaranth flour, quinoa flour, kamut®, leavening (sodium bicarbonate, cream of tartar), yeast, extractives of paprika. *Non-genetically engineered soy and wheat.

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We chose to bake these in the oven to avoid having to fry them in a shallow pool of fat and they cooked up beautifully. I was impressed that the breading actual was crispy and the texture of the “meat” was fibrous/stringy (like chicken) and moist, it definitely feels like you’re chewing on the real deal. They are very lightly seasoned, so not overpowering at all, which I think would allow them to be used in a variety on dishes. My only qualm, and it’s one I have with just about all meat substitutes, is that there is a substantial amount of sodium and fat and this is to make them flavorful. A serving size, 2 pieces, has 4.5 grams of fat and 240 mg of sodium. That’s all dandy when you abide by the suggested serving size, but let’s face it, one can easily take down the bag in one meal.

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I would totally recommend these, but this, like most meat alternatives, is a special occasion item and should be eaten sparingly. If you’re worried about your protein intake eat more leafy greens.

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Field Roast Hand-Formed Burger Review – Giving Meat Eaters No Excuses – Again!

Gone are the days of cardboard cut-outs and mushy, squishy, fall-apart patties, these burgers are a “meat eater’s delight.” You know what I’m talking about. That’s not to say that those bean burgers and veggie patties aren’t delicious, but in no way do they successfully mimic the real deal in flavor or texture… unlike Field Roast’s Hand-Formed Burgers!

Girl……………. These straight up taste just like a real hamburger! Do you remember those? However, instead of consuming fear, antibiotics and hormones from a decaying animal carcass (sorry for the visual, but it’s so true), you’re sinking your teeth into a juicy, vegan, hand-formed burger.

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This was our 4th of July treat and hot damn they’re amazing! We baked them in our oven and served them al fresco on the patio, while enjoying the warm, summer weather.

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My first impression upon opening the package was of disappointment from the amount of solidified fat surrounding the patties. So, I took a towel and cleaned off the excess gunk, similar to the effect of towelling off a slice of pizza… Hey, every little bit helps.

These patties are dense, as in they are heavy and hold their shape. We don’t own a grill, so into the oven they went and once heated up they maintained their form even when held up by one end or tugged on; my initial disappointment was beginning to fade. Then came the tasting sample, I bit into that sucker like a caveman. What ensued was a flood of memories and emotions coupled with sheer elation!

“Holy fucking shit! This taste’s like a fucking burger!” I proclaimed while shoving the remainder of the patty into my eager to taste, yet not eager enough to choke, husband’s face. He took the patty from my hand and proceeded to calmly take a bite while giving me his best “I highly doubt that” face. Meanwhile, I was retrieving the packaging from the garbage to inspect the ingredients as disbelief had taken over that what I had just tasted was indeed plant-based and not animal.

“Oh, my God!” I heard my husband moan behind me. “Oh, my God!” I turned to see his eyes rolling into the back of his head the way… well, you know. “Oh, my God!” He scanned the empty kitchen, as if looking for someone to shake and yell “You’ve gotta try these, man!” Unfortunately, we were the only ones standing in the kitchen that afternoon, wide-eyed and dumbfounded by the discovery of the Holy Grail!

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Try them out! They’re hella expensive, but you shouldn’t be eating them on the regs anyways.

Try them!

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“She’s My Cherry Pie” Sorbet

What you’ll need:

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Equipment: Food processor

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Ingredients: 7 large bananas, 2 cups of cherries, 1 tablespoon almond extract

Step 1:

Pitt the cherries and peel the bananas, then freeze them overnight or however long it take until they’re frozen solid.. Remove frozen bananas and cherries from freezer and allow to thaw for approximately 10 minutes at room temperature. This will allow the food processor to puree them a lot easier.

Step 2:

Toss frozen bananas and cherries into the food processor, as well as the almond extract. Be sure that the bowl and blade are locked into position before you add the ingredients.

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Step 3:

Locked and loaded? Time to turn on your food processor. If you don’t have one of these  you could use a blender, but be sure that it is a high-speed blender, like a Vitamix and tamper the shit out of it.

Note: If the fruit is too hard then you can add a bit of water, little by little through the feed. The water helps the fruit to move around in the bowl by softening it slightly. Be careful because if you add too much you get a smoothie. You’ve been warned! If you’re using a blender, you may need to add a bit more water.

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Sometimes your sorbet needs a bit of help. If it starts to ball up on the side turn it off, remove the lid and carefully separate the ball with a spatula throughout the bowl. Then lock the lid back into place and turn it back on. On occasion I’ve had to do this step a couple of times. Trust me, the juice is worth the squeeze!

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Step 4:

Scoop and serve!

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English Toffee Smoothie

What you’ll need:

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Ingredients: 7 large bananas, 1 tablespoon cacao powder (you can always substitute with carob powder), 1 pipette Sweet Leaf Sweet Drops English Toffee, ice cubes.

Note: You will also need water to your liking.

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Equipment: Blender (surprise!)

Step 1:

Peel the bananas and pack them into your blender. Follow with the cacao powder and the english toffee drops.

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 Step 2:

Add ice and water to your liking. I used to like my smoothies really thick so I would use less water, but nowadays I like them quite “liquidy” so I use more water; it’s a matter of preference. 

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Step 3:

Blend until completely smooth in texture.

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Step 4:

Tuck in!

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Fruit Haul – June 30th, 2014

What? More fruit? Again? Yup, just about every Monday we buy the bulk of our food… primarily fruit. My husband and I go to a food distributor that actually sells to the public and we pick up our flats of fresh fruit. We get tons of questions and sometimes people actually think that we’re getting food for a restaurant. “Nope, it all goes into our bellies.” 

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Peaches, Bananas, Grapes

This week is a smaller order because we’re still working on some dates from last week and we’ve been eating cooked meals at night.

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Yellow Peaches

We got these same peaches last week and they ripened very quickly, which was awesome! The first one I bit into was pure heaven. They were so sweet and juicy and perfect. They were just amazing and so, obviously, we a few more flats this time around.

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Bananas

If you follow a RAWky road then you’ve been witness to the dessert smoothie extravaganza that has been going on for the past few days. Peppermint Patty Smoothie, Coconut Cream Pie Smoothie and Peach Cobbler Smoothie are just a few that I’ve made recipes for, so if you’re interested go check them out. After many-a-smoothie we had to restock.

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Grapes

Surprisingly calorie dense and so delicious, grapes are a super refreshing and convenient fruit. They are so easy to transport, making them a great option for packed lunches.


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Peppermint Patty Smoothie

What you’ll need:

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Ingredients: 7 large bananas, 1 tablespoon cacao powder (you can always substitute with carob powder), 1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract, ice cubes.

Note: You will also need water to your liking.

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Equipment: Blender, of course…

Step 1:

Peel the bananas and toss into your blender. along with the cacao powder and the peppermint extract.

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Step 2:

Add ice and water to your liking. I used to like my smoothies really thick so I would use less water, but nowadays I like them quite “liquidy” so I use more water; it’s a matter of preference.

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Step 3:

Blend until completely smooth in texture.

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Step 4:

Serve it up, drink it up!

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Peach Cobbler Smoothie

So far, this recipe is my favorite and I made a massive batch of it. However, if you’re getting tired of me posting these high-carb, low-fat, raw vegan dessert smoothies, then I’ve got some bad news for you… there are more to come. But, if you’re digging the healthy smoothie inspiration then I’ve got good news for you… there are more to come!

What you’ll need:

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Ingredients: 7 large bananas, 5 yellow peaches, 1 pipette Sweet Leaf Sweet Drops Vanilla Creme, 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon, ice cubes.

Note: You will also need water to your liking.

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Equipment: Blender (as usual)

Step 1:

Peel the bananas and pit the yellow peaches. Jam ’em into your blender. along with the cinnamon and the vanilla drops.

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 Step 2:

Add ice and water to your liking. I used to like my smoothies really thick so I would use less water, but nowadays I like them quite “liquidy” so I use more water; it’s a matter of preference. 

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Step 3:

Blend! As you can see, even after quite literally jamming all of this fruit into the blender, this bad boy is overflowing. If you’re doing to same (and haven’t scaled down) be very careful while blending.

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Step 4:

Pour into many of your favorite glasses (cuz damn this is a lot of smoothie!) and enjoy! 

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