Monday, October 20, 2014

Milk Kefir

Kefir is a natural probiotic drink. I am making all these homemade probiotics to get them in my son's guts. I am eating the cultured vegetables, and they are drinking the kefir. Now this is the VEGAN Mocha Angel, and full disclosure, I used whole milk because as a beginner to making homemade probiotic drinks, I wanted to start with with what was easiest. I will move to water kefir and kombucha, but for now it's milk kefir for the boys.

From Cultures For Health:

"When kefir grains or culture starter are added to milk the bacteria begin feasting on the
lactose, or milk sugar, in the milk. This feeding process produces byproducts such as lactic
acid, very small amounts of alcohol, and carbon dioxide, and also causes the bacteria and
yeast to reproduce and permeate the prepared milk kefir. The milk sugar also nourishes the
grains themselves, allowing them to grow and reproduce."

And here is the coolest thing about kefir, it's bacteria can colonize in the gut. Which means it sticks around inside of you forever. That's good stuff!

I used kefir grains from Cultures for Health only because a health store near my home carries it. A week later, I've made successful kefir everyday.

The first photo is what it looked like once cultured.

Above is the same kefir from above. See how it separates from the sides of the jar? Once the milk stops jiggling, I know the fermentation process is complete.

All you literally do is add kefir grains to milk. Above are the grains in milk. The yellowy thick balls are the grains. I didn't want to wash them off, again because I'm new to this. But I think they can be rinsed off. 

After I poured the milk in a strainer, separating the grains from the milk, above is what was left.

I was worried the boys wouldn't like it, but they did! I have to add strawberries and honey, but eat it they will! That's Jona eating it for the first time (it was a little thick, so he ate it like yogurt.) They have had it everyday since the first batch was finished. My goal is to get it into them everyday.

Althea ◦

Saturday, October 18, 2014

How to Make Cultured Vegetables

Why ferment your foods?
1. They improve digestion.
2. They restore proper bacteria in the gut.
3. They are rich in enzymes.
4. They help us absorb the food we are eating.
5. It's inexpensive.
6. Fermentation improves the flavor of your food.

The simplest way to make cultured vegetables from scratch is with cabbage and sea salt. This is an easy version: Making Sauerkraut.

I had one packet of Body Ecology's Veggie Culture Starter left. I decided to use it before it expired.
Cultured Vegetable Starter contains the following beneficial bacteria:
Lactobacillus plantarum
Lactococcus lactis ssp. lactis
Lactococcus lactis ssp. cremoris
Lactococcus lactis ssp. diacetylactis
Leuconostoc mesenteroides ssp. cremoris

Lactobacillus kefyr Non-GMO dextrose as a carrier (consumed during fermentation)
One packet can be used for seven consecutive fermentations.

(And this is not an ad for Body Ecology or the Wild Fermentation site...only sharing information.)

In exactly 1 hour and 15 minutes, I made 2 different sets of cultured veggies. Cabbage, carrots, ginger, and garlic is the one on the left. Cabbage, orange, and apple is on the right.

First, put 1/2 cup of water, the culture starter, and a sugar source to feed the culture, in a small pot.

Heat to 90 degrees. Let sit for 20 minutes or longer. I bought candy thermometer, which I saw once I ripped it open, started at 100 degrees. I used my fingers to gauge. Ninety degrees is warm to the touch. This is going to be your brine.

While the brine is sitting on the stove, cut up your vegetables. I used my food processor to chop up everything.

Put all the veggies in a bowl. This is the carrot, cabbage, garlic, and ginger mix.

Take 2-3 cups of chopped cabbage, 1 cup water, the brine, and blend all together.

Add that liquid mixture to your veggies. Mix well with a spoon until it's all juicy

Pack into a ceramic or glass jar. The smell will stick to a plastic jar. And plastic chemicals can leech into your food. It's just best to stay with ceramic or glass. Plus, glass is pretty, and you can check on your veggies as they ferment without opening the jar. Above is cabbage, apples, and orange. See the cabbage rolls on top? I use them to pack the veggies down. Cultured food expands during the fermentation process. Allow 2 inches between the veggies and lid.

This is the cabbage, carrot, ginger, garlic veggies. I put all of my jars in my storage room, and covered with a towel. The hotter the room the faster they will ferment. The cooler the room, the slower they ferment. Give it 3-7 days in the spring, summer, and fall. Seven to ten days in the winter depending where you live.

I can smell the garlic without even opening my jars yet. I'll show you what they look like when the veggies are ready!



Sunday, October 5, 2014

Teaching a Raw Food Class

I taught a raw food class on Saturday at Pathways to Whole Living, as part of their October Detox month. In the photo above, I am with Pathways Owner and Founder, Tracey Oliver-Keyser. If you don't know her, she is a phenomenal woman.

Tracey made a beet juice, with beets, carrots, and apples.

I made oatmeal, vanilla milkshake, kale salad, and tacos.

It was an interesting mix of people. All the food was great (yea!). I've taught two other classes there this year. Next up is Raw Desserts, most likely in November. When the date is confirmed, I'll let you all know.

Althea ◦

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Offering Readings on Fiverr

If you haven't heard of Fiverr, it's a marketplace for creative and professional services starting at $5.
I joined on Sunday night, offering Life Purpose Readings for $5. I've gotten 5 clients in 48 hours.

People offer services ranging from:

  • proofreading
  • jingles
  • voiceovers
  • book cover art
  • SEO reports
  • to anything you can think of.....

I am looking for at least 5 more people this week. If you were always wondering about my intuitive readings, and that side of me, this is the perfect place to jump in.

My link is here:

I spent a month researching Fiverr before I decided to do business with them. They have lots of checks and balances (like ebay or Paypal) to protect both buyer and seller. Here is what I like about it:

  • No one can randomly post a positive or negative review of your work, a la Amazon. Services must be purchased, and services must be delivered. There's room for mutual cancellation, and resolution.
  • You can add to your "Gig," as it's called, with positive reviews (Gig Extras). 
  • You can have more than one Gig.
I am telling everyone I know who has marketable skills. If you are looking for legitimate work from home, this is the place.

Althea ◦

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

I'm on YouTube!

Guess who has launched their Mocha Angels channel on YouTube? Me!!

Leave a comment please :-).

A. ◦

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Chocolate Cream Pie

I'm still alive :-).

More on us in a second. I have been making raw food again. I want to share this Chocolate Cream Pie from The Rawtarian. I love her site because the ingredients are simple. I keep looking for complicated recipes and their are none. I am a fan.

This photo is what was left of the pie. It went fast. I do recommend it and I'd make it again. It reminded me of a Fudgsicle. The recipe is here:

Since my last post, I went to see my cousin Christian graduate from Hampton University with a Master's Degree in Architecture.

The boys finished their first year in school. Both did great. Raymond ended the year with a 3.1 GPA. Jona's grades jumped by the end of the year to a 3.0 GPA. They are in camp now and loving it.

I got attuned to Reiki Level 2 on Saturday. It's been eight years since I took the first class. This was an amazing experience. I am happy and grateful.

Althea ◦

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Khan Academy Works!

I have to quickly brag about Raymond. I am so proud of my boy. He showed an interest in Computer Programming last summer, but it didn't stick. This year, he again said he wanted learn. He wants to learn computer animation. So we tried again. We started on Sunday by using the tutorials on Khan Academy.

If you've never heard of this site, go there now and bookmark it. Then tell all of your friends and family about it. It's is a free site where you can learn everything from basic addition to calculus to economics to art history. It's founder, Sal Khan, has a vision for a "one world classroom." Both my kids improved their math skills on Khan Academy.

In two days, Raymond learned basic computer programming language. Last night, wrote a script all by himself.

That is a screen shot. If you want a closer look, go to:
to clearly see the script. The only thing he asked me was "how do you spell pepperoni?" He created the shapes and colors all by himself! This is such a big deal. With all of his diagnoses, it's wonderful to see him embrace math and science with enthusiasm. I am a proud mama.

Althea ◦


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