Just a self-trained home cook in an 8' x 12' kitchen honing his craft…

‘J’ is for juicing

About a year ago, I saw a commercial(on Cooking Channel TV, surprise, surprise) for a documentary that really sparked my interest. Little did I know what was in store…

After having been pescetarian for almost a year, we sat down to watch Fat Sick and Nearly Dead, a film by Joe Cross.  Click on the link and watch the trailer or better yet, the entire piece which is free on some internet sites.

Well, before the credits had finished rolling, I went online looking at and comparing prices of juicers. I settled on one of the same brand used in the film, but a bit less expensive than the model Joe had used. I’m no stockbroker, after all.

I found the prices about the same, so when I discovered it was available at Bed Bath & Beyond(which allowed me to use a 20% off coupon!) I became the proud owner of a new Breville Juice Fountain Plus(actually I did a LOT of research, even buying 2 juicers to compare volume output, clean-up, etc. and finally settled on the Breville). Along with my copy of Juicing For Life, I was ready to juice. Lacking a book or wanting more options than those included with your juicer booklet, there are LOADS of recipes on the wide world of the web. After a couple of runs I discovered the need for some ‘Nelson’ improvements. Here they are:

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The pulp catcher container I have lined with a plastic produce bag to make cleanup easier and in lieu of the annoyingly small juice cup that comes with the machine, I have rigged a hose which empties the juice  into a large receptacle in the sink.

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The hose modification was because I found the need to make more than one 2-cup serving at a time. Now, in a perfect world, you would do as shown in the film and only juice the amount you were about to consume. But I don’t…(live in a perfect world OR only want to make 2 cups at a time).

After  a few days, I found myself rapidly becoming a slave to my new toy and not in a good way. The clean up was easy enough as long as I did it as soon as the juicing was complete. But I was spending a LOT of time cleaning fruits and veggies and the juicer parts had become near permanent residents in the dish drainer rack.

A friend was learning to juice along with me, but she was juicing quantities at a time and storing it. Hmmm. We talked about it and she rebuked my notions that it was best to juice only what you would consume in one serving for fear of not getting the full nutritional benefits, directing my attention to Arden’s Garden whose  juice is produced long before consumption. I decided to give this method a try.

Off I went to the Buford Highway Farmer’s Market for provisions. Here are the ingredients I started with:DSCN0371

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On the menu we have carrots, ginger, apples, oranges, lemons, limes, and BEETS(especially good for a cleansing juice). Here is the sink filled with a vinegar concentrate mixture, then everything gets a scrub with Dawn and a scrungy pad, (even if they’re organic). DSCN0375

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DSCN0377How much you peel and clean is up to you. I top the carrots and de-seed the apples(the seeds contain trace amounts of cyanide, so just don’t consume too many). Sometimes I take the skin off citrus, other times I don’t.

On this particular day, here’s the refuse pile:DSCN0359Now you might look at this pile and think “Oh horrors,” but none of this is edible, so just fuhgeddaboudit.

The rules of juicing are simple: start with the softest and move to the firmer. If I get something that needs a little help though the hopper, I throw a carrot in and that usually does the trick. DSCN0378

DSCN0379After all this effort, here’s what your reward is which in my house is about a weeks worth.DSCN0366
I have tried juicing vegetables and honestly, I prefer to eat them. Celery is overpowering in juice- not matter what else you add, the celery flavor predominates. Kale is kale. It leaves me uninspired. Period. Spinach turns brown and hideously unappetizing when you don’t consume it immediately. You can juice a king’s ransom of tomatoes and end up with a cup of tomato water and if you juice cucumbers, use them sparingly or your juice will taste like gazpacho(which I love, but not necessarily for/with breakfast).

Concoct your own combinations and see what your preferences are.  Juicng is well worth the efforts and I’m hooked for life. Try it and you will be too.DSCN0387

Here’s a parting shot ralston took which I think is magazine-quality dramatic and tastes good, too!DSCN0388

Toujours, bon appétit!

© Kyle A Nelson

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