January 19, 2012

proof rum, year of the dragon, Vol. 69

While we’re still on the topic of healthy drinks, and with Chinese New Year just around the corner, we are featuring a very relevant and antioxidant-rich drink today – green tea. Like us on Facebook and Twitter to get last minute updates on tastings, parties & events.

Dragonwell Mojito ½ oz fresh lime juice • 4 large mint leaves • 1 1/2 teaspoons sugar (1 1/2 tsp agave nectar or brown rice syrup) 
4 oz brewed green tea, chilled • 1 oz proof white rum

Muddle the lime juice, mint and sugar together in a glass until the leaves bruise lightly and the flavors are released. Fill glass with ice and pour in proof rum and green tea. Stir and garnish with mint.

Calorie breakdown: ½ oz fresh lime juice | 4 calories • 4 large mint leaves | 0 calories • 1 1/2 teaspoons sugar | 24 calories or 1 1/2 tsp agave nectar or brown rice syrup (there are more calories in both agave and brown rice syrup - 45) • 4 oz brewed green tea, chilled | 0 calories • 1 oz proof white rum | 64 calories


TSAA Tea Shop We purchased our green tea at TSAA on the Danforth. Tsaa Tea Shop was created to promote tea drinking in a contemporary, yet relaxing ambience. They offer over 100 varieties of premium loose leaf tea, bubble tea, tea lattés, smoothies and fresh sandwiches. (412 Danforth Ave. Toronto, 647.347.8720) (Their website is down for maintenance www.tsaateashop.com)

They were very kind in helping us decide on which tea to purchase. We couldn’t choose between the Organic Dragonwell or the Moroccan Mint, so we selected some of each and sampled them both in the drink. Ding! Ding! Ding! ding! The Moroccan Mint was the clear winner. It simply added that extra layer of mint to an already fresh drink. It’s really good. When making the tea, use 1 tsp for each cup and let it steep for 1 minute. The Dragonwell was also good, but it’s flavour was a little less intense.           


Born in Nova Scotia, Ani Phyo was later raised in New York State and currently resides in LA. She is an Eco-Lifestylist, organic and raw-food chef and author of four award-winning cookbooks. (with number five on its way) (http://aniphyo.com)

Ani’s fourth cookbook, “Ani’s Raw Food Asia” offers flavour-packed recipes from Korea, China, Japan, Thailand, Vietnam, India, Indonesia, and Hawaii. Ani includes special menus like, brunch from Korea, Indonesia, India and China. And our absolute favourite – a list of healthy cocktails and finger foods to serve at a rawkin’ rawktail party.

Her recipes are quick, simple and most require a short grocery list of ingredients.
Not only is the photography beautiful, the book is full of cultural information, green-living ideas for longevity and happiness drawn from Eastern culture and traditions. 


Ani’s Daily Happiness Tips:
“These are some of the things I strive to practice each day.”
Forgive No one is perfect, and mistakes are only mistakes when they aren’t given a chance to be corrected. Remember to also forgive ourselves. Compassion Treat others as you want to be treated, with love, patience, tolerance, humility, and forgiveness.
Make amends The only person who suffers when we hold on to resentment and bitterness is us. Be generous With your time, and resources. Making time to help someone else is really rewarding. Be kind Mom always taught me to be kind, including to those I know and those I don’t know yet. Inner happiness Try not to be affected by what goes on around you, focus within yourself, do good around you, and create your own happy reality. Make a difference Give back and make a difference in your own neighbourhood and community without seeking money or financial gain. Faith, Hope, and Inspiration Find something to believe in.


Here is a sample recipe taken from Ani’s Raw Food Asia. She offers more recipes on her website (http://aniphyo.com)

Summer Rolls with Ginger "Peanut" Sauce - Vietnam
Fresh rolls of thinly sliced cucumber wrappers are filled with kelp noodles, sprouts, mint, basil, cilantro, and chile then served with a ginger “peanut” dipping sauce. If you don’t have kelp noodles on hand, substitute with spiralized zucchini noodles or shredded carrots.
Filling 1 cup shredded Boston lettuce leaves • 1 cup kelp noodles, cut into 3-inch lengths • ½ cup mung bean sprouts, rinsed • 3 tablespoons mint leaves • 3 tablespoons basil or Thai basil leaves • 3 tablespoons cilantro leaves • 1 teaspoon Thai hot pepper, serrano pepper, or other small hot chile pepper, seeded and julienned
Wrapper 2 cucumbers, sliced very thin lengthwise, using mandoline slicer
Sauce 1 batch Ginger “Peanut” Sauce (see below)

Place filling ingredients into bowls and arrange on your table or countertop.
To assemble rolls, place a strip of cucumber onto a flat surface, like a cutting board. Layer a scant 2 tablespoons lettuce and 2 tablespoons noodles at one end of the cucumber, followed by 1 tablespoon bean sprouts, 1 teaspoon mint leaves, 1 teaspoon basil, 1 teaspoon cilantro, 2 pieces of pepper. Place four cucumber sticks to either side of your noodle, herb, and spice pile. Roll fillings up inside cucumber strip diagonally. Place in a container. Repeat.
To serve, transfer rolls onto a serving plate or four dishes. Serve with a side of Ginger “Peanut” Sauce for dipping.These are best eaten immediately, but they will keep in fridge for 1 day.

Ginger “Peanut” Sauce (makes 1 cup)
Raw peanuts don’t taste very good, so this sweet and savory Thai peanut sauce–inspired dip is made with almond butter, coconut water, ginger, and lime zest.
Sauce ¾ cup almond butter • ¼ cup lemon juice • 2 tablespoons Nama Shoyu • 2 tablespoons agave syrup • 1 teaspoon grated ginger • ½ teaspoon minced garlic • ½ cup coconut water, or filtered water, as desired
Garnish 2 tablespoons lightly chopped cilantro • 2 teaspoons lime zest

In blender, place all sauce ingredients. Blend smooth, adding just enough water for desired dipping consistency. To serve, scoop into small bowl. Sprinkle on cilantro and lime zest before serving. Will keep for 5 days in fridge.


As promised – here is your very own copy of our 60+ Thursty Thursday recipes to download. We kept the colour to a minimum for your printing convenience. Just click on Thursty Thursday Recipes to get to the pdf file.


We dedicate this Thursty Thursday to Alexandra and Mike. Happy New Year guys!

Weekend Forecast:
Saturday: Scattered flurries and a high of - 6 degrees.
Sunday: Variable cloudiness and a high of - 6 degrees.

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