Garden Zucchini with Raw Marinara

This last week has been a whirl-wind of activity. What I thought was going to be a vacation, turned out to be a full week of work – but it wasn’t the type of work I was expecting. I’d planned on giving myself an easy week where I could enjoy the summer heat, experience some new raw food and maybe, sip some great summer wine. But that was not fully in the cards.

I missed out on the wine, but didn’t miss out on the raw foods! Thinking back, I’m kind of glad I decided to go raw for a week during this hectic time. If I hadn’t, I would have eaten out every night and picked up the easiest, fastest food I could have gotten. As it turns out, the raw food that I got to enjoy really didn’t take all that long to prepare – both making and figuring out what to make. What topped the list was a Raw Marinara over zucchini that I’ve told a bunch of people about and they all want the recipe.

Well, here it is. I highly recommend it. It’s fast and stores well. I’m sure it could be great over something other than zucchini, but the garden’s productive this year and I’ve got lots of zucchini. So much that I’m giving it away like always. It makes me feel good to be able to share.

This dish turned out looking like this:

This was a full meal! The bowl in this picture is probably 2 quarts in size. It’s big enough for an epic salad. Both zucchini that you see in the picture below are in this bowl. If you make this much, you’ll probably find that you won’t be going back for seconds because you won’t be able to finish firsts! Not because it’s not full of flavor, but simply because you’re full. This stuff really hits-the-spot.

Before spelling it out, I’ve got to give credit to the source. I found this on Jenny Cornbleet’s Raw Food Made Easy site. I’m sure there’s a lot more there, but I just haven’t had the time to poke around and find out. If you find another keeper, please let me know.

Recipe as I made it:

  • 2 Large Yakama fresh meety tomatoes
  • 1/2-3/4 cup sun dried tomatoes in oil
  • 1 carrot
  • Maybe 1 tbsp your best cold pressed olive oil
  • A dozen or so large fresh basil leaves
  • A swig garden fresh oregano (less than what I show)
  • 1 clove garlic
  • Green part of one green onion
  • Dash cayenne pepper
  • Pinch of your favorite salt
  • & 1 large or 2 small zucchini

Start off by pealing and grating the zucchini. You don’t want any of the green (or as little of it as possible) in your meal. But the longer the slices, the more like spaghetti it will be. Grate and set aside on a few clean towels. Zucchini is really watery, so you’re going to let it drain just a little.

Now, back to the sauce, I used a blender. You could either use the same, or a food processor. I’m sure both would work just as well for this. If you use a food processor, cut up the carrot and garlic a bit more than what you’d do for a blender. You might even want to turn them first because they are so much harder than everything else. Once you’ve broken the carrot down just a little, add everything else – except the basil. In the blender, grind just enough to just get the mixture to turn. That might be ten seconds or so. Then, add the basil and incorporate. You should still see little green specs because you’ll only grid for another couple seconds.

It’s really that easy. If you blend too long, it will liquefy. If you leave it a little chunky, it will feel more like marinara.

Now, lay out your bed of zucchini in your favorite bowl (not a plate) and cover with a full serving of marinara. What I show in this picture should really feed two people (well, ok, add another zucchini). If you’re just making this for one, just save the extra for another meal. The marinara is just as good the second day!

Take note, the picture I show doesn’t show the cayenne pepper. The time I made it and took a picture, I was making it from memory and I left that little bit out. It was good, but the cayenne makes it great! Just a tip of a spoonful is all you need. Maybe as much volume as you’d use salt. A little goes a long way!

Can’t wait to make this again!

Make happy choices!

Quick and Easy Garden Hummus

Some days I feel more creative than others. Yesterday’s creativity has bleed over into today and I have to admit that this Hummus is just as good today as it was last night. Yet this time, I’ve got pictures and the recipe to share!

Last night I wanted a heavier salad. I wanted something with substance that would last a few hours for I didn’t want to find myself snacking throughout the evening. Thus, I reached for one of my favorite things: sunflower seeds! I figured I’d just blend them up in a salad dressing and pour it over my salad.

Well, it turned out pasty and it sat like a pile of green **** in the center of the bowl. Lori looked at it and shook her head no without even giving it a try. I think the light green color turned her off. After a little convincing, she gave it a try and, even though she doesn’t like hummus (and that’s what she called it) she took a big spoonful as her salad dressing.

And it was great!

I made this again for lunch today and it tasted just as good. Yum. So, I’m writing it down so it will be around for next summer.


1 small (normal) zucchini pealed

  • The tops of 7 or 8 basil plants
  • 1 cup course chopped carrots
  • ½ cup sunflower seeds
  • 2 Tbs cold pressed olive oil
  • ½ Tb balsamic vinegar
  • Bit of salt (little bit on spoon)

As you can see, I’ve got oil, vinegar, salt and Basil as if it’s a salad dressing. But the rest gives it body that makes it more hummus like than salad dressing like. So, place it all in the blender.

I put the zucchini in first for the bulk of the water is going to come from there.

Now, blend. You’ll need your tamper for this is just like making hummus…  Well, it is hummus! Press the veggies down into the blades until it starts to turn. At that point, you’re going to let it blend for about 30 seconds on ‘10’ (if you have a Vita-mix). During this time I make sure the blender doesn’t suck air down to the blades stopping the spin. To do this, you hold the tamper right down to where the mixture turns over. The temper gently plugs the hole preventing air while letting the blender turn the ingredients.

As you can see, I got just a little over two cups from this ingredient list. And it’s wonderful!

The best part about this is that it’s really easy and fast. If you don’t mind the green color, you don’t even have to peal the zucchini. The sunflower seeds are also straight out of the bag – no soaking or sprouting! From start to finish it’s probably 10 minutes.

Also note that the ingredients were mostly from the garden – that is, the carrots, zucchini and basil. I love it when I get the opportunity to eat suck fresh living foods. I can basically pick the produce, wash, blend and enjoy in the matter of minutes. The vitality contained in the plants never gets lost. Eat living foods and you’ll find your own vitality will increase.

Good day!

Zucchini hummus (and Raw Tahini)

Now that we’re at the end of the summer, the zucchini plants in the garden are in full production. It’s hard to keep up with all the fruit that they put out. Twice now, I’ve given away a number of large zucchini and I’ve even made zucchini chips!

But what I really wanted is to make the fruit into something that I can have as a lunch food – hummus – and not have it heavy like what’s made form sprouted garbanzo beans. And, as it so happens, today is a great day to try Zucchini hummus!

I poked around the internet until I found something that looked reasonable.  As it turns out, a video posted by RawFoodFamilyLife caught my eye.

Look!  Kids are eating it and actually having fun. I’ve got to say, from my point of view, these kids have no idea how well they are being taken care of!

In any case, I paused the video part way through and typed out the recipe.


  • 3 to 4 zucchini pealed
  • 2 to 3 teaspoons tahini
  • 1 squeezed lemon
  • 1 little glove garlic
  • 1 tablespoon of cumin
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • Tiny bit of salt

From the looks of it, they just blend until it’s smooth and enjoy.

But it wasn’t that easy for me. I didn’t want to run to the store and pick up some tahini, so I surfed around a bit more to see if I could find a reasonable tahini recipe.  As it turns out, I found one that fit the bill:

Making Raw Tahini

This one was from GeekGoneRaw. I stumbled across a Creamed Sesame tahini dessert that I figured I could use the tahini part for my hummus.  I’ve copied his recipe here.

Raw tahini:
Sprouted sesame seeds
Raw and unfiltered honey, to taste
Cold-pressed coconut oil and sesame oil
Himalayan salt

Soak sesame seeds for 8 hours. Drain water, rinse thoroughly and sprout for another 8 hours. The seeds won’t actually grow, the idea is to get rid of the enzyme inhibitors, so that the calcium and other nutrients are better absorbed. Once this is done, place the seeds in a food processor or blender, add honey. Then blend in 50:50 coconut and sesame oil. Add salt. Taste and adjust. I like my tahini with a nice balance of savory and sweet. If you find that cold-pressed sesame oil is too strong in flavor, substitute for more coconut oil.

So the challenge is to get the tahini going so that I can make the hummus. If you read the recipe closely, you’ll see that it takes a while to get the sesame seeds to sprout. Thus, while I’m letting the zucchini grow, I started the sesame seeds.

After a day, I was ready to go.

Just so happened that I had everything that he called for the in recipe and, because there really wasn’t any measurements to follow, I simply added two cups sprouted sesame seeds, 1 Tbs coconut oil, 1 Tbs Olive Oil and 1 Tbs Honey. Followed by a little more than a pinch of salt.

Started with two cups seeds.

Added everything else to it and blended. I didn’t want to make too much, but I probably should have made more. It’s hard working with so little in the blender.  In any case, it turned out great!

I had company visiting that I got to try it. I offered up a small pinch, about the size of a peanut. She placed it in her mouth and the expression turned to pleasantly sweet . after a few seconds the bitters from the seeds kicked in and her eyes widened with an “Oh My God!” For a second, she thought that she’d been tricked and then realized that it was really good. Shortly thereafter, she was rattling off different things that would be good with it.

Me, well, I just wanted to add it to the hummus!

And I did.

Turned out a little runnier than I’d expected, but it’s got really good flavor. I love the cumin. I’m looking forward to my lunches this week.