MJF Field Trip: Camp Hero

bluffs

Looking for a cool spot to explore in Montauk? Camp Hero is legit. “Undetermined” bluffs, cliffs that make you feel like you’re on another planet, a killer view of the lighthouse- it is a beautiful spot to slow down, enjoy the moment and connect with the earth. Just BYO pineapple.

Oh, just contemplating life.

Oh, just contemplating life.

Just please watch where you’re going. No ‘gramming near the edge, please.

Camp Hero lighthouse

Camp Hero White Caps

Whitecaps for days.

jammer and gretch

Just bluffin with you.   Mah whole crew is loungin.

A reclining Oat spotted in his natural habitat.

For the Love of Kale

Kale.  America’s favorite superfood.  The Ryan Gosling of leafy greens.  This weird rough vegetable has reached super star status in the US in the past few years because of its glorious nutritional benefits and versatility.  But that’s old news.  We all know it’s super healthy and we should eat it all the time. But how, you ask?  Those big bushels of kale you spot at the farmers market sometimes seem more like house plants rather than ingredients.  But don’t be intimidated.  Here are three creative, easy, and delicious ways to incorporate more kale into your diet.

 

leanne blog kale

 

Kale Chips

Don’t have a dehydrator? Who cares.  set your oven to 275 degrees F and remove kale stems from the leaves.  wash and dry thoroughly.  Toss the leaves in olive oil and sea salt and place them on baking sheets.  Bake for about 20 minutes, flip the leaves, and bake for another 20, or until the leaves are crispy.  Enjoy them naked or hit it with nutritional yeast to taste and you’re done.  Kale chips are usually eaten as a hand held snack but throwing them in a soup or salad is also all kinds of wonderful.

 

Kale Lemonade

Go MJF style and use kale in your cold press juice.  Because it’s packed with vitamins but doesn’t contain a ton of water, use other fruits and vegetables that do along with it such as cucumber, apples, and citrus.  This lemonade is perfect for a morning buzz.

a large handful of kale

a handful of spinach

one small cucumber

2 stalks of celery

half a lemon

one large green apple

and one small chunk of ginger

 

 

Japanese Kale Salad

Massage your kale. This is the magical secret.  This little trick will make you want to eat raw kale at every meal.  Never make a kale salad without massaging it first.  It transforms the leaves from little rough pieces of green to soft luscious receptors for whatever marinade concoction you can dream up.  I keep a large container of raw kale massaged in lemon juice, olive oil, and herbamare in my refrigerator at all times and use it as a base for any salad I want.

I swear I could write a book on kale salads alone, but here is one of my absolute favorite recipes to get you in the groove:

in a large mixing bowl with a pair of CLEAN bare hands, massage kale leaves with

 

the juice of one large lemon
a table spoon of tamari
2 table spoons of balsamic vinegar
2 cloves of garlic (minced)
a teaspoon of freshly grated ginger

Drizzle kale with sesame oil.  Add fresh scallions and shredded nori to taste.
garnish with toasted sesame or pumpkin seeds and shredded carrot.

Trust me, this will be your new favorite meal.

 

Massage me.

 

Anyone can prepare a stellar kale dish.  Start here and go wherever your little vegetable loving heart will take you.  Once you start the possibilities are endless.  I promise.

 

 

Written by the awesome Leanne Kalpakis, a member of the MJF family and a bonafide mermaid rock star. Continue to check back to MJF Life for more inspiration from her.

 

Lee Kalpakis is a New York City based lifestyle blogger.  Born and raised in the lush farmland of the Hudson Valley, she learned the basics of growing and preparing the food that came from the earth beneath her.  It was then that her love affair with whole foods began.  As a self taught cook, Lee specializes in recipes that follow a plant based diet.  With a passion for raw and vegan cuisine and family roots deep in traditional Greek and Polish comfort cooking, she works to marry the best ideas of new and old world meals with upstate and urban New York style.  When she isn’t playing a show with her band or petting dogs, she’s daydreaming about fruits and vegetables and isn’t afraid to admit it.

 

 

Why I Fell For Green Juice and Why You Should Too

love and juice: what it's all about.

 

We are absolutely thrilled and honored to be able to bring green juice to Montauk. It has long been an obsession and a life changer for all of us at MJF. Our energy levels, health and appearance were so significantly changed by the power of green juice… and we loved the convenience of drinking it at anytime. It quickly took over our morning coffee on our way to work and for those sketchy energy drinks when we needed a pre going out pick me up.

Here’s a short list of why I fell head over heels for the juice:

 

1. Green means vitality.

The awesome green color in these vegetables comes from chlorophyll, which is actually like sunshine in a liquid form! Plants harness the sun’s energy in photosynthesis, and we can cash in on all that powerful energy and vitality when we ingest these plants. They are high vibrational and plants make us feel ALIVE! I seriously will feel a nutrient buzz after one of these babies that is like a plant based high.

 

2. My body and diet were seriously lacking. 

We can all use a little nutritional boost- no matter how healthy we eat. I thought by eating mostly plantbased food with grains and seeds that I was doing right by my body. It is a great start but, sadly, most fruit and vegetables are grown in a soil that’s depleted compared to what it used to be years ago, so they don’t contain as many nutrients as they once did. It’s worth adding a concentrated and easily absorbed boost to your day as a true, real food multivitamin supplement. I always feel like it’s a shot of phytonutrients right to your bloodstream.

 

3. My life was stressful and busy and stressful and busy….

Stress and pollution happen to us on a daily (hourly, minutely?) basis. This causes inflammation and literally wears down on our bodies and energy levels. We now need more antioxidants and alkalizing greens than ever. Being on the run and having no energy used to make me want to reach for a coffee or diet soda or an afternoon chocolate bar- all of which used to further zap my energy.  My body was getting depleted and it was a vicious cycle. Too tired to eat well, to tired to work out, grab a quick fix, feel worse. Adding a green juice or smoothie to my day provided me with both that instant pick-me-up and a lasting energized and uplifted effect.

 

4. Green juices are the true breakfast of champions.

I love brunch, I hate breakfast. If you’re someone like me who isn’t particularly found of breakfast or feel like they don’t have time for a “complete and balanced breakfast” a juice or smoothie first thing is an easy go-to. It requires less processing and chewing and sitting and cleaning, yet provides you with plenty of nutrients to start your day off on the right foot. Especially when you can grab and go right from our MJF fridge, there is actually no prep or dishes to clean 🙂

 

5. I want to stick it to the man. The health insurance man. 

Disease prevention is the best form of insurance. There’s no better health insurance than preventing disease in the first place. Do your part to avoid having to pay hefty medical bills later and dealing with the emotional strain by providing your body with plenty of antioxidants and anti-inflammatory foods, such as leafy greens, berries, avocado and coconut oil. “Pay the money to your farmer now, instead of to a hospital later” is one of our MJF mantras.

 

6. More greens means less room for other bad stuff.

As the truth about the industrialized, processed and factory-farmed meats and dairy products and processed sugars and chemicals and dyes that belong in a horror movie not on a grocery shelf begin to come out, many of us are making a choice to eat less of these foods. Instead, we’re reaching for other nutrient-dense sources of calcium, protein and fat. Greens are one of the best plant sources of calcium, magnesium and iron, and even contain a nice dose of protein. For real! And, greens don’t have to be boring. There are a limitless combination of things you can add to your greens to boost the benefit or the taste. The feeling after you juice is all the proof you need to want to swap out that vending machine snack for a bottle of goodness.

 

7.  I’m always on a quest for optimal health. I wanna live long, feel awesome, and- I’ll be honest- look goooood. 

Humans are living longer and are in constant search of ways to improve our well-being and quality of life. The quest is on for a more natural way of life. We’re a generation fed up with company’s claims for anti-aging, weight loss, quick fix, chemical laden bs solutions that come in forms of man made pills and potions and shots. We are educated and informed and we are truth seekers in search of optimal health, and not ready to settle for anything less. I believe the green drinks boom has happened as a result of this immense motivation to be the best we can be. Fully radiant and operating on all cylinders, just as nature intended.

 

green juice madness

Much MJF love,

Madi

 

 

Superfood Supastars: AVO LOVE

avocado chopped

Avocados are also known as alligator pears. Awesome.

At MJF, avocados are an obsession. Breakfast smoothies, mid-day snacks, chopped salads, dinner sides and late night sandwiches: according to us, there is no bad time of day or wrong way to eat an avocado.

 

FUN FACTS ABOUT AVOS

Avocados are a fruit. What!

They help increase nutrient absorption.

They contain loads of Vitamin E

They are rich in Omega-3 fatty acids

The prevents growth of free radicals

They nourish your skin.

They help regulate blood sugar levels.

They are rrrrich in fiber!

They aid in cleansing the intestines.

They provides those wonderful natural fats.

They are known to have anti-aging properties.

They fight inflammation.

They are considered “nature’s butter”- use as a spread or to make anything creamier while still taking advantage of all of these health benefits.

 

HOW TO PICK OUT THE PERFECTLY RIPE AVOCADO

If it it’s as hard as a rock, it’s not ripe yet. ripe avocado stemIf the avocado is mushy, it is too ripe.

We also found another good way to tell if an avocado is ripe. Look under the stem- the color should be the same as in this picture!