St-Patricks day is one of my all-time favorite days to celebrate. My grand-father literally got off a boat from Ireland and ended up in Canada. Growing up I remember how important it was for him to celebrate in style with his shillelagh in one hand and a beer in the other. I guess deep down I always knew green was my color in more ways than one.
I want to continue to celebrate and enjoy the day just like my grand-father did, but I also want to keep mother nature happy and not be too hard on my body.
I think St-Patty's is the one day out of the year we can all agree that it is acceptable to have a beer before noon – or is that the Irish in me talking? Everywhere you look- you probably see green beer or brightly colored green cupcakes or treats. Do you know how that food became the perfect shade of green? Artificial coloring most probably. Sure, it makes the beer and food bright and more appealing, but is it worth it?
CSPI (Center for Science in the Public Interest) says food dyes can cause everything from hyperactivity and allergic reactions to cancer, and is calling for the government to ban three of the most common dyes.
How can you have your green beer and drink it, too you might ask?
Here are some natural ways to add the green you want without the nasties.
- Drop a chlorella tablet or two in your beer or some wheat grass powder to get the green look. On the up side, at least you are getting some nutritional benefits from drinking.
- Use raw chopped up spinach in your cupcakes or treats for that Leprechaun green color.
- Want to add some green icing? Try spinach juice and turmeric paste to get the green color or just add raw spinach. Doesn't sound too appetizing, but don knock it until you have tried it.
- Use fresh herbs to make any meal green.
Speaking of herbs, I was in the mood for some cauliflower. So I attempted and surprising succeeded at creating cauliflower mash St-Patrick’s style.
Green Cauliflower Mash
- 1 head of cauliflower
- 1-2 tablespoons of olive oil or coconut oil melted
- 1/2-1 cup or more fresh green herb of choice parsley, cilantro, basil, dill etc
- 3 tablespoons of nutritional yeast
- Garlic powder or fresh garlic
- Black pepper to taste
- Steam the cauliflower until very tender.
- While the cauliflower is steaming, chop the herbs by hand or process in a food processor. Set aside
- Once the cauliflower is steamed, place in the food processor with the herbs and puree until smooth.
- Add the oil, nutritional yeast, garlic, and pepper.
- Continue to puree the cauliflower until your desired consistency. (Add a little water if it is not blending well).
- Optional: The pepper was used for my Irish theme- you don't actually have to make a Shamrock and use it. Unless you want to.
Now you have green cauliflower mash.
Isn't that a pretty green shamrock? And it tastes yummy, too.
What will you be drinking and eating this St-Patrick’s week-end? Maybe experiment with the natural colorings?
Whatever you decide- Have a green St-Patty's day!
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